Books about Anguilla


Sunday, 13 December 2009


Where economic activity gained momentum in any country, it promoted economic growth and social stabilization. Over the years, this growth was the result of an increase in budget expenditure which also helped the social stabilization process. You may refer to it as behavioral economics or socio-economics; any extenuating circumstances positively or negatively affecting one will have a direct impact on the other. A perfect example is the “global recession” – which was started by the “Government of Anguilla”.

But there are some interesting areas of concern we need to seriously consider when thinking about diversifying our economy:

What has been our inflation rate? What is our/the commodity? Would the global economic state of affairs affect the rate of exchange we appreciate with the US dollar relative to the other currencies we are expecting to trade with? Where are the needed infrastructures (legal and physical)? How about our status as an EU territory (part of Britain), in relation to regional trading treaties, consumer standards, and regulations compared to the EU/Britain’s? And last but not least - who are our markets – the OECS, CARICOM, NAFTA or the EEC?

And then there are Intellectual Property laws and conventions which we must adhere to. A proper shipping infrastructure must be in place together with effective Maritime legislation. Will we be flying the Union-Jack, American or the Anguilla’s national flag on your envisioned Shipping Industry? Therefore, new regulations will have to be established or followed – that’s entailed trust.

And then the question of manufacturing of who’s raw material, at who’s expense, at who’s profit and lost? A key challenge for diversification on Anguilla is the lack of natural resources, outside of Salt, that can translate revenues into sustainable development; and human and institutional capacities are still weak.

Then you spoke about cheap labour in an over inflated economy – doesn’t sound logical to me.

The reality is that, what is beautiful in theory may not necessarily be possibly attractive in reality. Anguilla’s industry capacity is limited to Tourism, Fishing, Finance, Services and Salt - outside these are the derivatives complementing their main industries. One can argue whether or not Transshipment is an industry. In my opinion it too is a derivative, a loophole, a golden gift for which greed and selfishness have seen its remnants.

Most ideas on diversification are derivatives… simply areas complementing our unique existing industries - however inactive some are - but nothing new or novice in any form or shape. They are simply areas where government has already laid some infrastructure however, through lack of vision with a high dose of jealousy, selfishness and greed; we have failed ourselves and continue to blame governments for our lack of vision and unity; or simply waiting on some investor to come to Anguilla and spend their hard earned money on us for nothing – only to be kicked in his/her arse as we brag how much we have milked them… downright despicable!

In my opinion, despite the many challenges that remain for Anguilla to emerge from the fragile situation we were shoved into, the government hopes of new and potential discoveries in its niche Tourism and Offshore Finance markets will bring much needed additional revenue to our economy; and have made good gains despite the volatile markets and the global financial crisis.

We as a people must be in tuned with government’s initiative of creating employment environment opportunities and policy initiatives which have fundamentally revised ideas and expectations about their application of different forms of market orientated solutions. The days of handouts are over – now is the time to take the bull by its horns... let’s be vigilant; and stop blaming our governments.

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“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity” – MLK.