An article on the upcoming Tourism Investment Bill came and went pretty quickly on Bernews without much fanfare though a few things stood out as worth noting.
The proposed draft Bill is “envisioned to be more attractive to developers to build new hotels, restaurants and attractions, and/or reinvest in Tourism products, and to eliminate the cumbersome and costly administration,” Minister of Tourism, Transport & Municipalities Michael Fahy said. (emphasis added)
This is encouraging. Far too often we see new legislation and bureaucracy added but not nearly often enough is focus put on reducing and cutting it.
Bermuda’s existing legislative framework is “outdated, non-competitive and not investor focused.”
This statement describes many areas of government, not just tourism, so it is welcome to see mention of it.
“Overwhelmingly, developers have categorized Bermuda as cost prohibitive leading to unprofitable hotels, while investors describe Bermuda as complicated, cumbersome, uncompetitive and confusing.
If Bermuda wants to remain competitive and attract new industries we must streamline regulatory processes. This is essential and far more conducive to business and industry growth than government getting involved in trying to stimulate growth. The absolute best thing government can do is focus on streamlining bureaucracy so that it is painless, efficient and accurate. Regulation is absolutely necessary, too little introduces incredible risks, too much and growth grinds to a halt.
As much as we can we need to be focusing on reviewing processes and policies and asking ourselves if they’re really necessary and how they can be streamlined. The tourism investment bill as described sounds like a welcome step forward to make Bermuda more competitive and less painful when it comes to attracting investors.