“No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable” Adam Smith. To have a thriving country there must be improvement and growth within the economy. As of late, The Bahamas has encountered large amounts of debts, budget deficits and trade deficits. In The Bahamas there is a generally slow growing economy which is in desperate need of revitalization. Growth within the Bahamian economy results in a reduction in the unemployment rate and a higher standard of living throughout the entire archipelago of Bahama islands. As a society we must improve our economy by utilizing all-natural resources, developing our industries and increasing the amount of exports on an international scale.
Utilizing Natural Resources
In today’s economy, all around the world, most countries gain their wealth from utilizing their natural resources to their advantage. One may ask how first world countries economy become so developed? Well these countries do not solely rely on taxes however they make good use of all their resources. These developed nations make use of their natural resources such as oil, coal, natural gas, wind and solar energy. Countries like Norway and Dubai utilize their oil reservoirs in a way that their population benefits from it. In The Bahamas we many resources yet we do not capitalize directly from them.
On the island of Inagua there is a salt factory that is owned by the Morton’s Salty Company. However, I suggest that as Bahamians we take back ownership over our salt industry to assist in improving our economy. There are many avenues of our natural resources are not being used to its full potential. Director of Labour, John Pinder mentioned that “aragonite exports could not only pay off our national debt but give every Bahamian a $50,000 cheque” (Larry Smith 2017). With that being said there is no doubt that Bahamians can make use of their natural resources to advance the economy. It is now time for The Bahamas to revisit those terms and condition that we have with those companies that has control over our resources.
Developing our Industries
Additionally, the development of the industries in The Bahamas is vital to the improvement of the economy. The Bahamas’ main industry is tourism followed by banking and fishing. However, there are a plethora of industries that are underdeveloped. The upcoming industry in The Bahamas is agriculture. For many years, agriculture has been a source of income and even a way of life for Bahamians ranging from Grand Bahama to Great Inagua. Developing the agriculture industry means that there will be a decrease on the number of annual imports of fruits, vegetables and other goods that we can grow locally.
This enables more Bahamians to perhaps pick up a new skill of understanding the technicalities of agriculture. Moreover, the brewing industry is somewhat overlooked in The Bahamas because it may not be seen as lucrative as the other industries. Nevertheless, this industry is filled with endless possibilities to make an astonishing addition to the betterment of the economy. Industrial manufacturing is another avenue for growing the Bahamian economy. As mentioned earlier taking full control of the natural resources is crucial to the further development of this industry. Developing and manufacturing resources like salt, aragonite, sponge and reusing conch shells for calcium carbonate are just some ways to increase the likelihood of the industrial industry.
Increasing our Exports
Increasing the amount of exports in The Bahamas will boost the economy. Typically, there is a surplus of goods imported annually from all around the world. However, this tends to leave the economy with a trade deficit. A trade deficit is defined as a situation in which the value of goods a country imports is greater than the value of goods it exports (Cambridge Dictionary 2018). As a result of utilizing all resources and developing our industries the amount of exports can now be on the verge of rapid increase. Developing our industries leads to more goods being produce and manufacture in The Bahamas.
Persons in agricultural industry can now find innovative solutions to exporting more goods internationally as opposed to the influx of food supply being brought in. By utilizing all resources, The Bahamas can now capitalize on resources that are manufactured privately like the salt to raise the exports. Additionally, to increase the amount of exports Bahamians must first be willing to take the risk of entrepreneurship. There untapped avenues in The Bahamas that Bahamians can break the seal on to higher the amount of exports. In order to become an entrepreneur, one must have the following: vision, creativity, high energy level, need to achieve, self-confidence and optimism, internal locus of control, tolerance for ambiguity and tolerance for failure (Kurtz 2011).
With these traits many Bahamians can now explore what it takes to be an entrepreneur and starting a business which can compete on a global scale and call for large sums of goods being exported. The Bahamas basically exports pharmaceuticals, crawfish, rum, tomatoes. citrus, cement, and distilled fuel (Bahamas Investment Authority 2010). In comparison to the amount of goods that being imported is a tremendous difference. Therefore, increasing the amount of exports can be resolve by following these key solutions.
To conclude the Bahamian economy is in desperate need of rejuvenation. In order to improving the economy three major things must take place. Firstly, taking control of the natural resources in The Bahamas is essential to the success of the economy. If the production of some of our natural resources remains under private control how can there be any economic growth if there is little to no profit being to the Bahamian economy. Secondly, developing the industries in The Bahamas is extremely important because you cannot solely rely industries like Tourism, Banking and Fishing.
After those industries have been pursued to its full potential then what will be left. So, developing other industries is vital in trying to improve the economy. Thirdly, increasing the amount of exports internationally will give the Bahamian economy the necessary push to improvement. Exporting goods and services is a direct result of utilizing all of our resources and developing our industries. Perhaps The Bahamas needs strong leadership to steer the economy down the right path. Improving the governmental system may just have a positive adverse effect on the Bahamian economy.
- Bahamas Investment Authority. (2011). Economic Environment. http://www.bahamas.gov.bs
- Rodgers, J. (2010) ‘Is It Really Better in The Bahamas… for Bahamians? Nassau, Bahamas. Media Enterprises Limited
- Rodgers, J. (2013) Bahamian Dream. Nassau, Bahamas. Media Enterprises Limited
- Smith, L. (2017) Aragonite Again. Bahama Pundit The Commonwealth. Bahamas, The: Economy. http://thecommonwealth.org/our-member-countries/bahamas/economy
- The Heritage Foundation. (2018). 2018 Index of Economic Freedom https://www.heritage.org/index/country/bahamas
- Thompson, A.A. (1979) An Economic History of The Bahamas. Bahamas. Commonwealth Pulications