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‘Make your frustrations and needs known — loud and clear’

What is happening to our island?

It is almost palpable — in the air, in feelings, in thoughts, and in media commentary.

It is the resignation, almost despair at the increasing infrastructure disrepair, neglect of nature, and the quality of daily life slowly atrophying down life’s scale.

It is the ongoing frustration offset with complacency that the cost of living really is not so bad, not any worse than years ago, so just get on with it, even as everything you look at has gone up in price.

It is the deepening reservoir of sadness and emotional numbness as friends, associates, and even relatives depart our shores for greener pastures elsewhere, leaving the community diminished of their vitality, skills, and commitments to our island behind.

The global rating sink (not to be confused with the Government Sinking Fund) is factual, not just anecdotal.

My recent review of Long Finance’s The Global Financial Centre Indexes ratings of competitive global finance centres noted the following position changes since 2007.

The GFCI, published semi-annually, serves as a valuable reference for policy and investment decision-makers.

Source: the Global Financial Centres Index: Long Finance. Methodology: The GFCIndex provides evaluations of future competitiveness and rankings for 121 financial centres around the world.

Forty-five instrumental factors are combined with financial centre assessments provided by respondents to the GFCI online questionnaire. GFCI 35 March 2024 used 48,365 assessments from 8,494 respondents. See attached chart.

Additional quantitative measures are provided by third parties including the World Bank, the Economist Intelligence Unit, the OECD and the United Nations.

GFCI Percentage Ratings Standings score by place. Number one — 1 per cent goes to the top rated jurisdiction in each review.

In 2007, Bermuda placed in 17th place out of 45 international centres, a 37 per cent percentile rating.

Subsequently, Bermuda’s ratings started a downward trend.

In March 2024 with GFCIndex 35, Bermuda’s rating came in at 106th place out of 121 financial centre jurisdictions — a 50 point drop to 87 per cent percentile rating.

Conversely, while Bermuda was one rating removed from our competitor Cayman in 2007, in March 2024, Cayman stood 29 points ahead with a 65 per cent percentile standing.

From the outside, Bermuda’s economy and place in the international financial centre world certainly appears to not be doing so well.

On the inside, Bermuda’s current governance, legislation, programme initiatives and related economical thinking appears complacent, almost stagnant.

Is the current thinking, keeping the status quo, going to change current circumstance for islanders?

Do you see Bermuda returning to vibrance and vitality any time soon?

Will this current thinking elevate your personal future?

What is going on?

Each of you should consider this question: are you better off now than five, ten years ago?

Only you know the true answer!

Do you think it is time for change in thinking on how to move Bermuda forward?

Is it time for independent thinkers, committed individuals who want the best for our island to step forth, contribute their innovative ideas, and then have the courage to get them implemented for the good of all?

Is it time for everyone else, who cannot for various reasons step up, to seriously consider supporting new independent thinkers for taking on governing roles to change the direction of our economy, to return to Bermuda to its former glory.

We have already lost many of these people.

Will we lose more?

Will Bermuda continue this downward slide?

Local news has recently reported that Sir John Swan and other independent thinking individuals are considering running for election to the House of Assembly as independent candidates.

Independent thinkers who will represent what their constituents need for a fulfilling life and are not conflicted in that purpose.

You don’t have to tell me what you want.

You tell these independent thinkers what you want, emphatically!

Make your frustrations and needs known — loud and clear.

Talking is not enough.

Express your choices by your participating in a free democracy. Vote for the best thinker who will work solely for your interests.

Enough said.

Martha Harris Myron is a born Bermudian US/UK national and an independent international finance journalist. She is relaunching the monthly Bermuda PondStraddler Finance Blog and is currently working on various Financial Literacy media projects and a Bermuda retirement primer at PondStraddler Life Productions.

Contact martha.myron@gmail.com