Tuesday 23 April, 2019

Barbados Electronic Single Window opening doors

The journey to the Electronic Single Window (ESW) dates back to October 2010 when the government of Barbados embarked on a project entitled “the Barbados Competitiveness Programme.’

The project valued at US$11.8 million, was jointly funded by the IDB, which provided the US$10 million in loan resources.

Terry Bascombe, Project Coordinator of the programme said the official launch of the ESW was rocky at times and even appeared elusive. Addressing an audience at its official launch this week he said the electronic single windows are still evolving and alternative models exist, but he believes the challenges is to identify the best fit model for the specific needs.

According to him, for Barbados to reap the multidimensional benefits, he said the system must be systematically used.

Users he admonished especially the participating government agencies must adopt the environment as a daily work tool as they thrive to improve governance and business facilitation in Barbados – noting that they are now under scrutiny from home and abroad.

He disclosed that recently he was contacted by the Australian Consulate in Barbados and asked to have a 30-minute conversation with a consultant hired by the Australian Government to implement an ESW in Australia, since he had heard about the BESW, saw the terms of reference and felt it was a sound model to learn from.

“At home we can be certain of being monitored by at last two interests, one is our private sector, which has been anticipating the BESW for some time now, while advocating for improvements in conducting business, the other is our own very Ministry of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development who has been echoing similar sentiments,” he explained.

An elated Bascombe said those that aided in the delivery of such a mammoth and much-needed initiative must be applauded.

The success story of the Barbados Electronic Single Window (BESW) would not have been possible without the millions provided by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

And the agency was praised for their financial and technical assistance.

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