PM reveals five-phase plan to reopen economy

PM reveals five-phase plan to reopen economy
Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The government’s COVID-19 Coordinating Committee is drafting plans to gradually re-open the Bahamian economy in five phases, according to Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis.

Minnis said the National COVID-19 Coordinating Committee co-chaired by Dr Pearl McMillan, Chief Medical Officer and Matt Aubry, Executive Director of the Organisation for Responsible Governance (ORG), has been meeting regularly to provide recommendations on a full range of matters related to the pandemic.

The prime minister noted that the government has started to reopen small parts of  the economy to allow Bahamians and residents to access hardware and auto- parts, among other items.

“Any further reopening will be guided by the advice of our health professionals,” said Minnis.

He said: “Even as we look and plan to open back  up – we will not and cannot establish a fixed timetable that says we will do this particular thing on one date and another on another date.  While the Government establishes plans, the general timing of the phased reopening recommended by the Coordination Committee, will be predicated upon metrics and guidelines by health officials.

“As in other jurisdictions, we must also have the flexibility to make changes quickly and to tighten restrictions if the numbers do not move in the right direction. Our airport and seaport partners – as well as the hospitality industry – are themselves working with their counterparts around the world to develop international and regional standards for the transportation and lodging of individuals in the COVID-19 landscape.”

He said: “We will review these standards and accept those that we feel are appropriate for The Bahamas. We will also as necessary implement our own specific standards where we feel various regional or international standards do not match our reality.”

(Office of the Prime Minister)

On Sunday, the Cabinet Office announced the establishment of the Economic Recovery Committee which will make recommendations to the Cabinet on the long-term economic recovery of The Bahamas economy, including job-creation and stimulating small business recovery and development in response to COVID-19.

The committee will focus on restoring the macroeconomy; restarting a competitive business environment; economic diversification; tourism and transport; financial services and labor.

The co-chairs of the committee are Acting Financial Secretary Marlon Johnson and businessman Ken Kerr, CEO, Providence Advisors.

“I have charged the Economic Committee with thinking boldly and creatively in its deliberations. We are in a new era, so we must think in new ways and think outside of the narrow confines of what is necessary or possible.,” said Dr Minnis.

Noting the devastating impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on tourism which he described as the “heart” of the Bahamian economy, Dr Minnis said that “in the interim while travel has stopped we must explore what else we can  do to make it through in these difficult times”.

He said: “This is not the time to be timid. What are needed are ideas that can generate economic activity and trade, and a pathway to those ideas that is doable. This Committee must think quickly, as we are in the crisis now. Ideas from all existing sectors should be reviewed. Ideas in sectors we are not yet in must also be pursued. We must use our individual and collective Bahamian imagination for greater self- reliance.

“We will continue to promote and to encourage the manufacturing of local products. The new face mask industry is doing well, and by some estimates may be valued between six to nine million dollars a year.”

Minnis also thanked Bahamians and residents for their suggestions and ideas, noting more than 1,700 suggestions have been submitted to the suggestions platform.

9 comments

I suggest you allow floridians to register online for fishing and cruising permits as long as they stay of shore and not dock. Boaters can moore off the islands and you can generate revinue.

It’s like they have been hired by the rothschilds to destroy the bahamas, or they are just really stupid.

He can allow all visitors to the islands to register online for fishing and cruising permits and not come on land but its not like they spend any money on land anyways,lol.The sad thing is our system is so antiquated I dont think they can pay online with their credit card to Bahamas Customs as yet.So sad,but true in this day and age,Wow.🙄

And we really need the revenue.We have had a drastic revenue loss since this covid 19 came about

Wow, we are probably loosing this fight we the pandemic and we want discuss on reopening ? Our focus is in the wrong place. Wow!

Excellent economic recovery plan. It looks good on paper and in theory. We will see what happens in the REAL world as Hurricane season is not too far from the Distant future.

Good day its so tru you put it on paper but do the Bahamian ppl do listen no dey dnt not so let’s see how its going to go ok u talking about reopening what about the hotel works its not safe for dem yes we all want to go back to your life

Consider offering an Annual cruising permit for US based boaters. This would generate up-front revenue and help kick-start the local economy once it has been reopened.

Please allow authorized dealers, such as Sanpin Motors, Friendly Ford etc., to provide full services to the public. Vehicle can be dropped off and collected .

Insurance claims cannot proceed without estimates from these dealerships, and repairs cannot be made.

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