Cannonier: Economic Recovery Has ‘Stalled’

October 1, 2018

“An economic recovery which started under the One Bermuda Alliance has stalled and Bermuda now risks going backwards,” according to the Opposition Leader Craig Cannonier.

“All the economic impetus from projects like new hotel construction projects and the new airport and our drive towards balancing the budget has been lost,” said Mr Cannonier, who was recently sworn in as Opposition Leader.

“The fact that we would be balancing the budget under an OBA Government this coming fiscal year speaks to the issues many have in the business community. That will not be a reality with this government.

Craig Cannonier Bermuda TC Sept 30 2018

“In the last few weeks we have seen nothing but negative reports on the state of Bermuda’s economy, income levels or the level of business confidence. All this while we still wait to see the hundreds of jobs the PLP promised in Fintech.

“We have just seen the Bermuda Business Confidence Index report which showed confidence fall by almost 20 points to 86.4. That was the first time the index had fallen below 100 and was the lowest level since the survey was started in 2014.

“The fact that immigration is one of the major concerns highlighted in this survey is telling especially after witnessing such anti-foreign rhetoric from the PLP.

“We recently saw a report on employment income falling by more than $15 million, GDP for the first quarter of this year has fallen by 0.4 percent and the volume of retail sales in June was down ten percent.”

“Despite all the economic indicators we have seen a rise in health care costs, reversing a Government pledge to reduce them, we have seen new dividend taxes which will hit the small Bermudian businesses and we will see the introduction of the 50 percent Sugar Tax, which will rise to 75 percent.

“The OBA had a clear plan in place to encourage new construction work with the airport and new hotels, to reduce the burdens on small businesses and to build on the success of the America’s Cup with things like new legislation paving the way to bring more superyachts here.

“It seems to me that Bermuda is on an economic knife-edge and the policies being pursued by this Government are not helping to stimulate our economy and help Mr and Mrs Bermuda.”

While not in response to this particular statement, Premier and Minister of Finance David Burt recently stated, “The first quarter results show: Government revenues are up; Government spending is down; the deficit is down by 24%; Visitor air arrivals are up; and employment in the economy is up.

“Is everything perfect? No. We still have a long way to go,” Premier said, adding, “This Government is committed to working with local and international companies to grow the economy and create jobs for Bermudians.

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  1. watching says:

    Cannonier is clearly trying to rebrand himself but you cannot rewrite history.

    • So now you are concerned about Mr. and Mrs. Bermudian.

      • sandgrownan says:

        Copied from a post in a different thread, but says it quite neatly:

        “we spent $68m here, in Bermuda, so that the AC could be held. It was $68m, not $75m, because it was under budget. The money was not “given to rich people”, it was spent here, in Bermuda. And it created $335m of economic activity, which the PLP is unable to recreate.

        Under the PLP all we’ve got is higher taxes on food, higher healthcare costs, $$$millions given in corporate welfare to rich business owners, reduced public services, and rats running alive all over the island. And the economy is shrinking by 10% over last year.

        We’re in the PLP recession.”

        Quite succinct really. The PLP are, as always, bereft of ideas and in over their heads.

    • inna says:

      And i bet your duma$$ voted for the PLP again, how selective some peoples memories are!!!

    • Double S says:

      Neither can the PLP. And it appears that their history is now repeating itself.

      Now that we got that out of the way, do you actually have a rebuttal to the facts (ie. business confidence down, employment income down,. GDP contracting, retail sales down)?

    • hmmm says:

      Uhhh pretty sure he is just doing his job as opposition leader. Pointing out that the PLP are failing.

      • Stalled like de JetGate investigation.

        • sandgrownan says:

          Do you understand “JetGate”…what about Berkelygate, or CedarBeamsgate, or Flattsprpertygate or just “plainoldincompententgate”?

          • Double S says:

            Port Royal gate…Court building gate…Pay to play gate…TCD gate…Hamilton Waterfront gate…White’s Island gate…etc.

        • Toodle-oo says:

          And let’s not overlook the PLP’s own and original Jetgate.
          You know , where a certain premiere went on a private jet ride and the owner got multiple untendered government contracts !

          • Martha Americano says:

            OJ and I both forgot about that one! Oh man how could we have forgotten about EB riding in his friends jet just before giving them a huge amount of money? OJ, can you tell me how we can forget some things and not others?

  2. stormy daniels says:

    BUrtcoin fix it!

  3. Justin says:

    Blockchain blockchain!! BitCoin Bitcoin!! Ha ha ha!!

    Don’t worry Bermuda, The Redemption Farm will bring jobs and they’ll sell eggs using the distributed ledger system!

    • wahoo juice says:

      So I hear that bitcoin is like currency but it is not currency…if you can get people to vote plp then I guess you can sell imaginary money. Did EB get paid with bitcoins? (answer is no OJ). I have a sense that chickens are therapeutic, fun to look at and maybe if you have self doubt you might even gain a sense of superiority. I don’t know where I am going with this but if it comes out of a chicken or the plp it is either an egg or…ah I forget what I was gonna say.

  4. Jt says:

    “We recently saw a report on employment income falling by more than $15 million, GDP for the first quarter of this year has fallen by 0.4 percent and the volume of retail sales in June was down ten percent.”

    And not one word on any of these reports from our leader. Only a glass 1/2 full spin on the negative views of business.

    • stormy daniels says:

      Nor do we ever hear what our national debt is, or has climbed to with all these handouts.

  5. Joe Bloggs says:

    “Premier and Minister of Finance David Burt recently stated, “The first quarter results show: Government revenues are up; Government spending is down; the deficit is down by 24%; Visitor air arrivals are up; and employment in the economy is up.”

    Did you see that! The Premier said “the deficit is down by 24%”! That means the Government has reduced our national debt by about $1.25 billion. Excellent work Sir!

  6. Time Shall Tell says:

    Funny how if the economy was on the upswing there would people giving praise to the OBA for the economy. However, the economy takes a dip & all of a sudden it’s all PLP. As for the PLP, we really need to demand more from our Premier, had the OBA been in power & the premier was silent on this very topic there would be an uproar.

    • Justin says:

      Funny how the economy was in a death spiral up to 2013 and then it recovered over the next 5 years and now it is tanking. Can you notice any correlations?

      Keep drinking de titty milk!! Ha ha ha!!

      • wahoo juice says:

        Not so funny but you are right. Thank you time shall tell for the opportunity to educate you.

      • Time Shall Tell says:

        What recovery, that was a temp fix or did you forget that was all based on a MASSIVE loan?

        • Question says:

          Money wasted keeping useless public employees and civil servants with their 70 days of sick leave a year.

          • Time Shall Tell says:

            OK, you can put down the stick now, the horse has long since been buried.

        • LocaliCartel says:

          Are you familiar with the concept of bridge financing? If not, you likely don’t have a substantial enough grasp to formulate sensible arguments around our sovereign debt.

    • Funny how people who warned last year that independence sabre rattling would damage business confidence were refuted and attacked with cries that it would do no such thing and yet here we are a year later and business confidence is down.

      Businesses most need political stability. The variety of events over the last couple years have raised alot of questions of what can change and caused people to take a wait and see approach rather than risk it. That’s what happens. Sadly few listened.

  7. campervan says:

    Talking of stalled, whats going on with the hotel developments at St Georges and Caroline Bay???
    An abandoned truck and a couple of wheel barrows lying around doesn’t add up to progress.
    Have the developments been put in moth balls? Can we the taxpayer find out what going on?
    25-11. Come on PLP sort it out, we need jobs and revenue.

    • Mb says:

      Waiting for the planned luxury condos to sell pre construction…and when they don’t they will probably pull out.
      St Geo property clearly in no hurry at all, since the shovels went in Loren has built several more lux homes and the Airport structure is up, glass going in now.

  8. Alicia says:

    Government debt doubled under the OBA, and said monies were duly released into the economy via Government salaries, AC35 construction, etc. We got a mini boost on more borrowed money and time. There has been no real economic growth from the private sector and this is the only thing that will bring about an improved economy in the long term. Sooner or later some Government will have to make the hard choices… lower taxes, smaller civil service, less regulation (in Bermuda that often means bureaucratic pettiness), and yes, less possible corruption (as alleged under the OBA as the PLP).

    • sandgrownan says:

      Disingenuous. Debt doubled under the OBA due to commitments already made by the PLP.

      • question says:

        Debt went from $1.4bn to $2.4bn under the OBA. I don’t know where you think that is ‘double’. Maybe you’re using the Burt math calculator, where it spits out false numbers.

        • sandgrownan says:

          Sorry, my apologies, responding to comment above, however my argument remains.

          • question says:

            actually, I think I misunderstood your comment. Sorry.

    • Double S says:

      The tired ‘OBA doubled the debt’ argument is disingenuous at best.

      They inherited an annual PLP deficit of $400mn in 2012.

      Just because teh financially incompetent PLP was voted out didn’t mean the bills and expenses they incurred went with them.

      they followd teh SAGE commissions recommendation on a ‘glide path’ to debt reduction as a wholesale cutbacks as a means to reign in the PLP’s $400mn annual deficits would have completely shattered an already broken economy.

      The OBA successfully cut the PLP’s $400mn annual deficits by 50%+ in less than five years and without making one civil servant (the biggest expense to the taxpayer) redundant. And I might add they also did it against rabid opposition in the form of the PLP (who created the $400mn annual deficits) and unions that vowed to get the OBA out of power by any means necessary.

      Isn’t it interesting that in two years business confidence went from a high to an all time low? Now what has happened in those two years? Hmmmm… Same old story from the same old Party.

    • red rose says:

      There had to be more borrowing – just to service the deficit the OBA was left with and until they could balance the budget. Economics 101!

      • LaV says:

        “Economics 101!”

        that’s the problem, they don’t teach economics to wall sitters.

  9. Stevie says:

    Burt spends more time off island. Wasting money on senceless trips that brings no reward back. Just the same old previous PLP tenure. By the way Ewart Brown. Guess you living it up now with your bonus.

  10. Rocky5 says:

    Across-the-board cuts do not tackle inefficiency, which is the core of the problem, and they often reduce productive investment.
    Your next PLP Government will make government more efficient by:
    Conducting an extensive review of the technology used within the government and funding investments to make the government more efficient and more responsive to both internal and external users via technology.
    Implementing performance-based pay for all civil servants to incentivise and reward workers for increasing department revenues, reducing department expenses, and increasing the performance and efficiency of a government department or ministry.
    Reviewing the SAGE Commission’s recommendations regarding the consolidation of government departments and ministries to implement cost savings.
    Undergoing a comprehensive review of the Public Service Commission legislation.
    Requiring all travel booked with public funds to be recorded under a business frequent flyer plan in the name of the Government of Bermuda. The benefits accumulated from this travel will be used to assist students who are recipients of training awards with the costs for their travel and to help other citizens in need.

  11. Rocky5 says:

    Your next PLP Government will grow our economy by:
    Forming a Bermuda First advisory group consisting of local and international business and community leaders to develop a long-term economic and social plan for Bermuda. Bermuda needs to draw on the intellectual capital of our stakeholders to get all sections of our community moving in the same direction. An economic plan that has broad community support will assist us in creating balanced long-term economic growth that will create jobs in Bermuda.
    Creating a Tax Reform Commission drawing participants from both political parties, international business, local businesses, trade unions, hoteliers, academia and the Bermuda Bar. Its mission will be to conduct a review of our system of revenue collection and taxation and to make recommendations to parliament on revenue and tax reform that make our tax system fairer and enhance Bermuda’s international competitiveness to increase the number of jobs based in Bermuda.
    Creating an Economic Diversification Unit to create new economic pillars in Bermuda. This unit will identify new opportunities for economic diversification and subject them to structured analysis and research. Once areas have been identified and agreed upon, the unit will seek local and overseas investment to develop new local industry, which will create jobs in Bermuda.
    Bringing jobs back to Bermuda by creating a payroll tax exemption for any Bermuda company that decides to repatriate previously outsourced jobs back to Bermuda.
    Developing an economic development fund called the Bermuda Fund. This fund will have strict governance controls so that it will not be subject to political whims, and will be run for the specific purpose of generating positive returns, while investing in the development of Bermuda-based businesses. Similar plans in both Singapore and Ireland have delivered positive results for their economies, and the PLP will advance this initiative to create jobs in Bermuda.
    Developing a Technology Hub at Southside. This will allow start-ups in the technology field that require little more than a computer and an Internet connection to use our regulatory environment while developing their new products and services in Bermuda. The vision is to transform Southside into a technology-based community with living facilities as well as an active office community.

  12. Rocky5 says:

    Your next PLP Government will:
    Implement the National Infrastructure Strategy Plan, which identifies important improvements and repairs to our infrastructure that will not only enhance our overall quality of life, but will create business opportunities for construction companies and jobs for Bermudian construction workers.
    Commence the redevelopment of the Hamilton Waterfront which was stalled due to the OBA’s poor governance.
    Support the Corporation of St. George to address sewage treatment in the East End.
    Ensure that all infrastructure projects are subject to a tender process in accordance with the Good Governance Act 2011.
    Not privatise public assets to foreign companies, robbing Bermudians of future revenue. Any private funding for infrastructure development will be done through Bermuda Government Crown Corporations, ensuring that profits remain in Bermuda for the benefit of Bermudians.
    Incentivise the construction of studio and one-bedroom apartments in the city of Hamilton which will be affordable enough for young Bermudians to purchase, creating jobs and bringing new life to the city.

  13. Mb says:

    The drop is scary
    I wonder how much it has to do with PlP placing Independence on agenda?