Leader of the Opposition, and First District Representative, Hon. Andrew Fahie said that poor customer service, redtape and exceedingly bureaucratic procedures are making the Territory a difficult place to do business even for the sister islands.
While making his contribution to the debate on the Virgin Islands Recovery and Development Agency Act, 2018 the Leader of the Opposition said that the rebuilding and recovery requires expediting processes. Putting it frankly Hon. Fahie declared: “It is difficult to do business in this British Virgin Islands.”
In making the point about the redtape and bureaucracy Hon. Fahie said: “We over-regulated, we have more laws than what John read about, and we have some people to the top with some bad attitudes. We are not getting anywhere till we change some of those things and some of the persons.”
As he noted the days ahead, the First District Representative said that changes will need to be made to issues that are hampering business fundamentals in the BVI. “We have to work on these things because all of this is part of recovery or else people are not going to want to invest here whether local or foreign.”
He explained that the residents of our sister islands usually have to travel to Tortola to get their business transactions done and he said that it is unfortunate how frustrating the process is for them. Hon. Fahie said that the system was not the best before, but has gotten worst since the hurricanes.
“I am surprised with the way the service is rendered by government, especially since the hurricanes, even more so than ever. With the type of service that I see, Anegada Jost Van Dyke and Virgin Gorda will ask for independence from Tortola. It is inhumane,” he stated.
The Opposition Leader even referenced the liquor licence process which has been lamented by the business community: “To get a liquor license you need Health, you need Trade, and you need Fire … No three comes the same time so you take over a month or more to get it because you have to go from one section to the next section to the other section and that is on Tortola. God forbid if you apply for it Virgin Gorda, Anegada or Jost Van Dyke,” Hon. Fahie added.