Bahamas: Celebrating 50 Years of Success and Independence
To little fanfare slightly over three years ago, an exciting new government business unit was born with the aim of reducing red tape and bureaucracy to improve investor appeal, enhance competitiveness and improve access to many public services.
The Department of Transformation and Digitization (DTD) strives to make “all major government services accessible on online platforms, thereby creating a more effective and seamless process for business to be conducted both locally and internationally with the government.”
Funded by a $30 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the project will be completed in phases by 2026. Specific objectives comprise the streamlining of government procedures and making them available online to reduce the cost of government bureaucracy; increasing the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in the public sector; and improving transparency of government activities and strengthening auditing and control mechanisms. “We recently digitized the application process which means it has been streamlined for international business and tourism investments, as well as financial services,” confirms Deputy Prime Minister Cooper. “We are making it easier and faster to do business and the result of that over the course of the past year has simply been phenomenal.”
Banking sector reaps rewards
Similar success and progress has been recorded in the private sector, where excellent ICT infrastructure has helped companies in a broad range of industries, but particularly in the crucial banking and financial services sector, to thrive and become the second largest source of GDP. Founded in the 1930’s in the Bahamas by entrepreneurs and traditional bankers, Deltec Bank & Trust is a fully licensed and regulated financial services provider, offering traditional private and corporate banking services to clients globally in both innovative and traditional sectors. The bank has innovation in its DNA, and is known for bringing personalized, expert partnership to its traditional banking services. “Our client experience is key and top of mind; we want our clients to have an ease of doing business,” explains CEO, Odetta Morton. “We expect some of our upcoming investments in technology to continue to enhance the client experience. We want to make sure that we are fully supporting our clients, so that they don’t have to worry about the business of doing banking and can focus on being innovators.”
Celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2023, Higgs & Johnson is a full-service law firm focused on the four core areas of dispute resolution, real estate and development, private client and wealth management, and corporate and commercial. The firm has grown to have 104 members, 37 lawyers and 19 partners. “We practice on an international level and with the large multinational law firms from around the world,” says Oscar N. Johnson, Jr., K.C., Co-Managing Partner. “We are looking to ensure we focus on client centered services by leveraging the technology present, and that is developing.”