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Jul 18, 2011

P.M. receives resolution from Belize Chamber of Commerce


Vanessa Peyrefitte

The Belize Chamber of Commerce, the backbone of Belize’s business community is by far the group that most represents the lifeline of most sectors of the economy.  Its membership has been recently vocal about the government’s acquisition of Belize Electricity Limited and the renationalization of Telemedia.  On Friday, the majority of chamber members voted and ratified a resolution that would be sent to the Office of the Prime Minister.  Today, the Chamber has confirmed that the letter has been received by the PM and amongst the forwarded topics was the rule of law.

Vanessa Peyrefitte, Marketing/Public Relations Manager, BCCI

“Last week Friday, the chamber held a special general meeting to ratify a resolution that was voted on the sixth of July by our membership and this resolution is in regards to the current business climate, the method in which government acquired private property and also adherence to the rule of law. On Friday, we had ninety-one members and of ninety-one members; sixty-one voted for the resolution and thirty voted against. And so we have since put the resolution in a letter format to the Prime Minister and we have received confirmation from the Prime Minister’s Office that he has received this letter. It is important for us to state that the chamber is not against nationalization. You hear proponents out there talking about the chamber in very negative ways. But let’s state it again, we are not against nationalization. What we have issue with is the manner in which the recent acquisition of B.E.L. took place. And so, just to say we would prefer for you to follow; a, b, c, and d in regards to that does not necessarily convey that we’re against nationalization. It just means that there is a way that we are expecting in regards to the rule of law that certain things would be followed. And again that translates into the investment climate. So we are for country, we are for development and we are for businesses. The chamber is a membership organization and so again it is our hope that we can work hand in hand with the government. We may not always see eye to eye, but we are definitely here with our hands outstretched to work with them for the benefit and this nation.         You know it is the desire of the chamber, which represents the business community, to work with the government. Even though there are various opinions out there about all sorts of things, at the end of the day, what is most important to us is the investment climate and also the sustainability of the businesses that are here in Belize. And so the resolution is simply for us to work together, to let the Prime Minister know [that] these are the sentiments of the business community. Investment climate—it’s very important. And at the end of the day, if we don’t have positive investment climate, then businesses suffer. If businesses suffer, then they start closing their doors. If they close their doors, then what do you have? You have an increase in unemployment. We don’t want that. And I don’t think the government wants that either. What we would want is just to work hand in hand with the government. Let’s partner together so that we can achieve the same goal. And I am sure that the government wants that goal to be achieved as well. What drives the economy in Belize? It’s the businesses. And so listen to what the business community is saying and let us sit again at a table, let us discuss and let us see where we can go from here.”

On Tuesday the Chamber will issue a press release detailing the contents of the letter to the P.M.

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1 Response for “P.M. receives resolution from Belize Chamber of Commerce”

  1. Initiate! says:

    BCCI smells too one sided. You are telling the truth, but it comes with a scent.

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