Column: MP Crystal Caesar On Inflation

November 16, 2021

Crystal Caesar Bermuda June 2021[Opinion column written by PLP MP Crystal Caesar]

It is important to give the public some background to the factors that drive our costs of goods.

Bermuda has two supply ships. One ship comes out of Florida. And, the other ship comes out of New Jersey. That means, all of the goods that supply our island come out of the United States or must transit through the United States.

As the price for fuel for ships goes up globally that cost has a negative impact on shipping prices.

Further, the Bermuda Dollar is pegged 1:1 with the US Dollar. This means the economic forces that impact the value of that currency impacts the value of our currency as well.

As all of our goods come from the United States and because our Dollar is pegged 1:1 with their Dollar, it means we’re impacted whenever there is inflation in the United States.

So, goods – from fruits to bread to furniture to building supplies – all become more expensive here in Bermuda.

One of the roots of these problems is the global supply chain challenges that impact getting the supplies to the ships that supply our island. When the US gets a cold, we catch it too.

In his speech to the PLP Delegates Conference last week, the Premier noted the following:

“In order to overcome the economic pain and anxiety brought on by this pandemic and to bring about positive, transformational change in our country it will require difficult choices. It will require a change in how we do things, hard work to execute that change, and it will require everyone to get involved in making the necessary changes a reality. Sharing ideas, and being involved in the discussions and work of executing those ideas is the only way for us to create the change that we desire and the Bermuda that we wish to live in.”

Indeed, the next few years are going to be tough. The recovery from the pandemic which harmed our fiscal house is not going to be easy.

It is going to be doubly difficult when inflation is thrown into the mix. The next few years we’re going to have to tighten our belts.

It means that we must no longer engage in reckless deals like the airport and Morgan’s Point that cost us hundreds of millions of dollars. It also means that we must not give away status, but, instead provide non-status opportunities for non Bermudians who choose to invest here and spend money here.

As importantly, it means we must cultivate and support our existing sectors and do whatever it takes to grow new sectors including promoting the opportunities in NE Hamilton and through FinTech.

We have a plan to grow Bermuda out of this crisis. But, it’s not going to happen overnight. We must all do our part, tighten our belts and together, we will make it through these tough times.

- MP Crystal Caesar, Constituency 31 – Southampton West Central

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Comments (17)

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  1. ben young says:

    Inflation is due to rise in the US by between 5.5 and 6.5 percent – this is bound to have a very negative impact on Bda. In the meantime, all we hear is plans to send out RFPs, nice feel good phrases about people being interested in XYZ but nothing actually happens.

    None of the 31 ideas mapped out by the PLP will come to fruition any time soon – if at all – but we need help now!

  2. Ringmaster says:

    Bermuda really is in for hard times if this is the best an MP can offer. It reads like a story for 3 year olds. The downfall began back in the mid 2000′s when the PLP Government enjoyed bigger revenues than expected, but instead of saving the surplus, they wasted that surplus and started to borrow large amounts. To try and stay the damage, they stopped paying into the Government Pension Fund and pretended they had a balanced budget. When the events of 2008 came, Bermuda had no savings to act as a cushion, and had to borrow more, and so it continues.

    • Wake up Bie says:

      The down fall began when the UBP changed it’s name to OBA to run away from it’s racist past. This is clearly why we have so much division today UBPERR!

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Lol, obviously. This obviously isn’t the result of 21 years of PLP incompetence. It was those 4 years in the middle. Right.

        I love how the MP from Southampton west central managed to hit all the key talking points and still managed to get in some xenophobia for good measure.

        She’ll get a pat on the head for that.

      • Question says:

        That’s the PLP economic plan, is it?

        • Ringmaster says:

          @Wake up Bie. You’re hilarious. I’ll remind you who the leader of the UBP was between 2006-7 Wayne Furbert, and between 2007-2011 Kim Swan. Both clearly racists according to you, but are now PLP MPs. Also the UBP has not been the Government since 1998. Hardly fits your version of events, but then that’s PLP fantasy history 101.

      • saud says:

        The OBA contains more black members than white…and you say it’s racist.
        Good of you to admit that racists come in all colours.

      • Double S says:

        So you’re stating BDA’s downfall is result of the UBP’s demise and the rise of the PLP to power?

        Seems about right…

      • Joe Bloggs says:

        The UBP did not change its name to OBA, but feel free to keep telling that lie to the voters.

  3. wondering says:

    The writer cannot be serious. This is nothing more than a propaganda speech supporting the Premier. The quote from the Premier is empty, vague and only inspires those who think he is a Messiah type.

    We need innovation not rhetoric!

  4. sandgrownan says:

    That reads like it was written by a 12 year old.

  5. puzzled says:

    I agree with most above/aforementioned.

    It’s Crystal clear….move to higher ground.

  6. Robert Keill says:

    Your comment is an insult to all 12 year old’s!

  7. Question says:

    What the heck is this? It’s childish drivel.

  8. Joe Bloggs says:

    Let’s start at the beginning.

    The Bermuda dollar is NOT “pegged 1:1 with [the U.S.] Dollar”. The Bermuda dollar is fixed at par with the U.S. dollar by the Bermudian Dollar Parity Order 1981.

    It is true to say that the PLP Government has fixed foreign currency purchase tax at 1.25% for each Bermuda dollar spent in acquiring foreign currency, but that is a different issue.

    So, if you are trying to explain in a nutshell the cost of purchasing goods in U.S. dollars, the better way is to say that it costs BD$101.25 for every US$100 worth of goods purchased

  9. Double S says:

    The airport coupled with Morgan’s point still doesn’t equal the PLP’s ANNUAL $400mn deficits. You guys are the main cause of our financial predicament. Take some responsibility for once for the massive damage you have done to this island.