ACT FINDING MISSION: In advance of preparation of an official Investment Climate Guide for The Bahamas, representatives of the United States Embassy recently visited Grand Bahama and were welcomed by officials from The Grand Bahama Port Authority Limited (GBPA). Pictured (left to right): Charles Pratt, Commercial Manager, GBPA; Deann Seymour, Chief Financial Officer, GBPA; Ian Rolle, President, GBPA; Alexander Sokoloff, Policy/Economic Chief, United States Embassy; Ginger Moxey, VP, GBPA; Hank Ferguson, consultant to the United States Embassy; and Karla McIntosh, Senior Legal Counsel, GBPA.
– Whilst on
island recently, Alexander Sokoloff, Policy and Economic Chief of the
United States Embassy, met with officials of The Grand Bahama Authority,
Limited (GBPA). The purpose of his introductory
visit was to become better acquainted with the island in advance of his
department’s preparation of the forthcoming Investment Climate Guide
for The Bahamas.
of the Port Authority, Ian Rolle, praised the embassy and Mr. Sokoloff
for their initiative in visiting Grand Bahama for onsite
familiarization. “We are pleased to welcome you, “ stated
Rolle. “Due to its unique features, Freeport offers substantial
benefits to potential investors. Our proximity to the U.S. mainland,
modern infrastructure, and free trade zone put us in a very enviable
Sokoloff explained that preparation of the Investment Guide is
specifically mandated by Congress. “It basically looks at the ease of
doing business in a certain jurisdiction. Are there any
obstacles to investments, are all investors treated equally, and what
is the overall investment climate per se,” he revealed. “We haven’t
done as much on Freeport by itself in the past, but in preparing this
report we wanted to expand on focused areas for
investment and gross opportunities.”
response, President Rolle noted that general categories of interest
include: trade, tourism, technology, real estate and energy, with
particular focus on developing related types of businesses
or clusters. Citing the arrival of Island Outsourcers’ new call centre
and the soon to be opened, Okyanos Heart Institute, Rolle added that
the present business climate in Grand Bahama is ripe with opportunity,
with a major resurgence close at hand.
face-to-face discussions were a follow-up to earlier meetings with
embassy officials in Nassau, where GBPA executives were given an
opportunity to showcase an ‘Invest Grand Bahama’ presentation
earlier this year.