Stubbs to detail stimulus proposals
Economist Robert Stubbs will give a public presentation on how the island’s economy can be rejuvenated.
Wednesday evening’s presentation, entitled “Building an Economic Roadmap to Bermuda’s Future” will detail an economic stimulus programme for Bermuda and outline a long-term, multi-decade sustainable development plan with the aim of delivering greater efficiencies, more affordable housing, less congested roads, genuinely inclusive growth and a healthier island lifestyle for all residents.
“The research presented is long-term and is designed to expose the root causes of Bermuda’s economic crisis,” Mr Stubbs said. “Before understanding what an economic stimulus programme or sustainable development plan for Bermuda looks like, it is important to understand why we can expect such plans to work.
“The reality is our crisis was policy-induced and was started well before the Global Financial Crisis of 2008. The historic peak in Bermudian employment occurred in 2000, eight years in advance of 2008, and the forced exodus of Bermudians from Bermuda was already under way prior to the outbreak of the Global Financial Crisis in 2008.”
Mr Stubbs suggested the stimulus programme he proposes would have a noticeable effect on our economy within weeks of implementation.
He argued that “damaging economic policies” identified in his research date as far back as the 1970s and 1980s, so rather than assign blame, the focus of the research is on “the policies themselves, their unfortunate consequences for our economy and Bermuda’s needed adjustments to correct the mistakes”.
Mr Stubbs stressed that his own father, the late John Stubbs, was a key political leader in the Bermuda Government in the early stages of the period examined.
Mr Stubbs said: “Moving forward with the stimulus programme as soon as possible is vital in order that our economy expand before our Government progresses with their plans for substantial tax reform or a living wage.
“Significant growth in the economy over the next three to four years promised by the stimulus will allow both initiatives to be adopted while avoiding additional business closures and more job losses among Bermudians.”
Mr Stubbs’s outline of a long-term sustainable development plan for Bermuda derives from an urban economic analysis of the island. Urban economics analyses the factors influencing the changing distributions of where people live and where they work in an urban area.
The presentation at BUEI is being covered by German Public Television for a segment to be aired nationwide in Germany in August focusing on Bermuda’s economic crisis and some of the more progressive initiatives being discussed on the island as potential solutions.
“In addressing our challenges,” Mr Stubbs said, “in many ways we are extremely fortunate in Bermuda. The island’s small size makes us more manageable and able to react effectively.
“Successfully adopting our needed reforms will require teamwork with Bermuda’s public and private sectors, PLP and OBA supporters working together to complete the necessary changes.”
The presentation will also serve as the soft launch of Seed Bermuda (Social, Economic and Environmental Development, a group cofounded by Mr Stubbs “to undertake, disseminate and debate rigorous non-partisan economic, social and environmental research with the goal of implementing a series of evidence-based policies for a more modern and sustainable Bermuda”.
• Mr Stubbs’ presentation will start at 6pm on Wednesday in the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute’s Tradewinds Auditorium. Tickets cost $5 in advance and $10 at the door may be purchased at www.ptix.bm/seedbda
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