Businesses urged to pay up debt
March 31, 2006

Businesses urged to pay up debt

Head of the OECS Operations for the Caribbean Credit Bureau Ltd., Bianca Keverne Williams is of the view that Caribbean people are becoming extremely delinquent in paying their debts.

Williams who was in the country on Thursday February 16, at a one-day seminar to teach representatives of various companies how to check a client’s financial history through the credit bureau, noted that too many people seem to be spending more than they are earning.{{more}}

The regional professional, who has trained personnel from Anguilla to Grenada and has also shared her expertise in Trinidad, Jamaica and Barbados, expressed serious concern about the increase in debt in the region.

She noted that what is more disappointing is that the attitude of delinquent payers continues to be very poor.

Williams stressed that Caribbean people need to be more transparent and accountable for their debts, since this could also affect the financial credibility of the Caribbean, making it less competitive in a global world.

She noted that the OECS Credit Bureau is aiming to be the main credit rating information desk where centralised information could be had on a person’s credit and payment history.

Williams emphasied that the facility will not only check up on the negative financial record, but it will also make people who have maintained good credit patterns be more visible and receive benefits such as easy credit access.

She pointed out, “We want to make sure that businesses have as much information as possible, because with information comes power and with power we can make better decisions in lending and borrowing money. Then we can put ourselves in better economic and geographical positions.”

Williams stressed that without a credit bureau, the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME) movement will not work and stressed that if more information on finances becomes easily accessible, it could prevent the Caribbean from going into a financial crisis.

Persons representing the telecommunications sector, the media, credit unions, the manufacturing sector and banks all participated in the seminar which was funded by the Caribbean Credit Bureau Ltd. and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce.

The main aim of the OECS Caribbean Credit Bureau is to lower the financial bad debt ratio in the region.