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Economic Recovery Committee appointed

The Nassau Guardian April 27, 2020

The Cabinet Office yesterday announced that Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis has appointed an Economic Recovery Committee.

The public-private committee 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.

The committee is representative of a diversity of public and private sector entities, according to a statement from the Cabinet Office.

In addition to the co-chairs, members of the committee include:

• John Rolle, governor, Central Bank of The Bahamas;

• Wendy Craig, former Central Bank governor; advisor, Ministry of Finance;

• Christina Rolle, executive director, Securities Commission of The Bahamas;

• Davinia Blair-Grant, executive director, Small Business Development Centre;

• John Delaney, QC, senior partner, Delaney Partners;

• Khrystle Rutherford-Ferguson, chair, Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Federation;

• Greg Laroda, chair, Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce;

• Suzanne Pattusch, executive vice-president, Bahamas Hotel & Tourism Association;

• Tanya McCartney, executive director, Bahamas Financial Services Board;

• Nat Beneby, former managing director, RBC Royal Bank;

• Patrick Ward, president and chief executive officer, Bahamas First General Insurance Co.;

• Edison Sumner, principal, Sumner Trading Partners;

• Franklyn Butler, CEO/president, Cable Bahamas Ltd.;

• Obie Ferguson, president, Bahamas Trade Union Congress; and

• Matt Aubry, executive director, Organization for Responsible Governance.

“The committee should be bold and creative in its recommendations,” Minnis said. “We are in a new era. We need to think and act in new ways in order to recover as quickly as possible and to build a more dynamic and diverse economy. We have to enhance the use of digital technologies and delivery services.”

The prime minister said that just as The Bahamas is seeing the local production of hand sanitizer, masks and other healthcare products, the government will promote more domestic production and manufacturing where possible. This includes greater food production.

“I look forward to the ideas, policies and programs the Committee will recommend to help The Bahamas to recover and to create jobs and more entrepreneurial opportunities, including for young Bahamians,” Minnis noted.

The prime minister thanked the committee members for agreeing to serve and to help provide a way forward for the country in response to the many challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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