0

Bran: ‘To Hell With You Blacklisters’

Branville McCartney

Branville McCartney

By NEIL HARTNELL

Tribune Business Editor

nhartnell@tribunemedia.net

The Democratic National Alliance’s ex-leader yesterday urged The Bahamas to “draw the line in the sand” against blacklisting-type actions, and tell the European Union (EU): “To hell with you.”

Branville McCartney, reacting to the EU’s decision to brand this nation a “high risk” jurisdiction for financial crime, told Tribune Business that The Bahamas would continue to be hit with such blows “no matter what we do” because such bodies would always “move the goal posts”.

Acknowledging that The Bahamas should have dug its heels in much earlier against such practices, Mr McCartney said this nation must “stop fooling ourselves” and recognise that “the ultimate goal” of groups such as the EU and Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) was to “wipe out our financial services industry”.

With the sector in slow, continuous decline since 2000, he urged The Bahamas to take back control of its economic destiny through diversification and seeking out new industries such as medical marijuana - which he argued could evolve into “a billion dollar industry”.

With The Bahamas now grouped with multiple rogue states, war-torn countries and international pariahs on the EU’s 23-nation “high risk” list, Mr McCartney said: “No matter what we do every time they move the goal posts.

“We must realise there’s nothing we can do in terms of satisfying these people, and they’re going to continue to move the goal posts, which is so unfair. We have to recognise that. We have to recognise that we can change all the laws in the world, be as compliant as we can be, but - at the end of the day - we will never satisfy them.

“We must ensure we have other industries that broaden this economy. From 2000 our financial services industry started to die and it is not going to come back.

The 11 laws passed to ensure The Bahamas escaped the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) “blacklist” that same year resulted in an instant shrinking of this nation’s financial services industry, which has been kept off-balance ever since by a constant barrage of similar actions and regulatory initiatives targeting itself and other international financial centres (IFCs).

The Bahamas has struggled to develop a viable, sustainable business model for its financial services industry every since, and Mr McCartney said this nation was better off ignoring the “blacklisters” and forging its own path to comply with best international practices and regulatory standards.

“We should have drawn the line in the sand a long time ago,” he told Tribune Business, “and said: ‘To hell with you’. To hell with you, to hell with you. Both administrations, FNM and PLP, have done what they had to do but they continue to put more stringent regulations on us.

“Who are we? Let’s not fool ourselves. Draw a line in the sand, to hell with them and move on. Do what we have to do otherwise. We have to diversify our economy. It’s not going to change. They will continue to tell us this every time they put new regulations and requirements on us.

“We will do our best to beat them, and then they turnaround and blacklist us. To hell with them. You blacklist us, fine. Let’s do what we have to do, what is necessary to benefit our country. I guarantee you that if we amend or change our laws they will in a few months come up with something else,” Mr McCartney continued.

“Draw the line in the sand. They’re going to do what they want to do. They want to wipe out our financial services and banking industry. That’s their ultimate goal. Why play their game? For years we’ve been giving them things, trying to comply and do what they want. It’s not going to change. Let’s recognise that and diversify our economy.

“We can’t allow these fellas to sit around the table looking at how they can mess with The Bahamas and take away our banking industry. Hopefully those that lead us will see the light ,and do what is necessary to bring this economy around and not be afraid to do it. It’s the same as doing business: You have to take risks. They have an ultimate goal. Why play their game? Draw the line in the sand. Period.”

Mr McCartney’s stance was backed by James Smith, the former minister of state for finance and ex-Central Bank governor, who argued that the EU’s actions in branding The Bahamas as “high risk” were “deliberate and vicious”.

“I don’t think it’ll ever stop,” Mr Smith told Tribune Business. “If you go back in history we see how many times the Government has acceded to the demands they make, shown we’ve done it, and they move the goal posts. This will never stop. It’s frustrating, and the Government must be frustrated.

“They don’t mean us well. It’s deliberate and vicious. We’re a sovereign country and need to stand up and say we’re part of the international community, we know what is required and we are doing it.”

Mr Smith reiterated previous calls for The Bahamas to form an alliance with other international financial centres (IFCs) subject to the same pressures, and adopt the stance that it is “not going to be concerned about blacklisting” and will instead pass laws appropriate to its economy and society that bring it into line with global best practices in fighting financial crime.

Otherwise, he argued, this nation will always be scrambling “at the whim and fancy of international organisations” to meet their ever more-onerous regulatory demands designed to drive The Bahamas out of the financial services business.

Comments

TalRussell 1 year, 4 months ago

Yes, or no since comrade Bran is no buffoon, he must knows this is the expected result from allowing we national debt climb towards a whopping $10 billion in foreign currencies even before red Imperial reds 5-year mandate expires.
Just you wait Bran, until they attack we Colony of Out Islands, continued ability keep our local currency at par US$, Yes, no all whilst we forgive $100 million rightly belonging PeoplePublicPurse - all Numbers Sellers forgiven by stroke red ink pen.

0

DDK 1 year, 4 months ago

Good tough talk, but what do we do about receiving funds from investors whose moolah is in EU banks? They will probably see to it that the vetting of the investor and investee will drag on indefinitely. I guess we will have to learn to play the new game!!

0

licks2 1 year, 4 months ago

Exactly . . . the new game does not play well with bellicose nonsense and cowboy drawing down on each other in the dusty streets. Take for instance our latest black listing. . .WE ON THAT LIST AND NOBODY EXCEPT THE USA (on the face of it) WILL LOOK FAVORABLY ON US. . .THEY DON'T WANT TO HAVE THE EU ON THEIR BACK. . .SO IF WE THINK THAT OUR NATIONAL BALLS ARE BIG ENOUGH TO FIT INTO MR MCCARTNEY WORLD VIEW'S PANTS. . .WE WILL FIND OUTSELF BEHIND THAT DRAWN LINE IN THE SAND ALL BY OURSELF!! BRXIT SHOWS THE MIGHT OF THE EU WHEN THEY TOLD MAYS THAT BRITIAN CAN GO. . .BUT SHE CANNOT CHANGE ANY LAWS THAT CURRENTLY BENEFITS OTHER EU MEMBERS. . .AND BRITIAN CAN'T CHANGE A DANG THINK. . .SHAKING IN THEIR BOOTS IS WAHT THEY ARE DOING!!

The ignorance of most Bahamians is showing itself as we move more into our international obligations. . .THIS BRAVE NEW WORLD IS UPON US!!

0

Bonefishpete 1 year, 4 months ago

Bran, MBGA - Make Bahamas Great Again

0

ThisIsOurs 1 year, 4 months ago

No. He has name recognition. That's all. Remember the debacle of secret meetings with Loretta. Maybe we need a national education campaign on how to assess political candidates. Nevermind. Chicken and beer will win out everytime

0

SP 1 year, 4 months ago

Branville McCartney finally said something I agree with. The Bahamas will N-E-V-E-R satisfy the European Union or U.S., Meanwhile they both are domicile to worlds biggest tax havens!

https://www.consultancy.eu/news/1641/...">https://www.consultancy.eu/news/1641/...

Better for us to do what's best for the Bahamas and politely tell the EU to go screw themselves with a rusty corkscrew!

0

licks2 1 year, 4 months ago

stupidity ON THE HIGEST ORDER. . .after we do that where do we go to trade with. . .China? Hell, she is fighting to be allowed to trade in the USA!! Trump placed trade tariffs on China and she is all over the world crying like a lil child. I suggest that you go in the Conner and take ya youtube with you and give yaself a crash course on the EU, USA and international trade dynamics and the G20 nations. . .Bran appears globally dumb and naive and so are you if you follow his childish retorts!!

0

tetelestai 1 year, 4 months ago

The nonsense and untruths that you speak here are beyond belief. And, sadly, people will listen to your drivel and find it intelligent.

0

pingmydling 1 year, 4 months ago

Poor Bran really looks tired and worn out in the heading photo. The EU , US ,and DNA must be having a serious detrimental effect on him. Relax man, get a life and go fishing ( look how good Ingraham's health is).

0

John 1 year, 4 months ago

The European Union is like a giant skipping rope. Frayed, yes with corruption. But spinning with demands and suggestions for compliance. the faster a country jumps to comply the faster the rope of demands grows. learn to stand still for a while and trip they ass up. All the bigger countries are either ignoring the demands or passing laws that allow them to circumvent them.

1

licks2 1 year, 4 months ago

You can continue to ague for the "free willie" mentality in you gaming houses doing whaever they want and we sit on we backsides and let them "cry" for their greed and keep our nation open to money laundering and terroristic funding with our little minded myopic lawyers who only see their political parties and pockets. . .THE REST OF THE WORLD WILL SIMPLY DROP YINNA CORRUPT TAILS OUT OF THE GLOBAL GOODBOYS CLUB AND YINNA CAN JUST KEEP YINNA LIL DUMB CORRUPT TAIL AS A POOR ROGUE NATION. . .WHO HAS NO NATURAL RESOURCES TO TALK ABOUT!! I hope doc them are watching this site. . .JOHN IS THE LAST PERSON TO TAKE ADVICE FROM TO RUN A NATION. . .TOO EMOTIONAL AND MIXED UP. . .TOO LIL BIT OF GOOD RATIONALITY!!

0

pingmydling 1 year, 4 months ago

Reality Check. pop. of US. 326 million, pop of EU. 512 million. pop Bahamas 395 thousand. My stick is bigger than your stick. Suck it up!!!!

0

licks2 1 year, 4 months ago

Hehehehehehehehe. . . and they are tied at the hips against China and Russia. . . we don't count. . .except we can provide them with what they need to protect their interests. . .we don't have to worry about terrorists using our systems to "jook up" us. . .they do! So them saying to we. . .close up yinna system so I don't get kicked in my rear via your systems! THINK. . .WE JUST CAME OUT WITH THAT PIECE OF TRASH FOR GAMING HOUSE STUDY ABOUT VULNARABILITY IN OUT GAMING SYSTEM. . .TWO DAYS AGO OR SO! Right after we come out with that trash. . .POW! They placed us on the list!! In other words. . .YALL WAN PLAY HARD BALL AYE. . .TRY THIS ON FER SIZE!!

0

birdiestrachan 1 year, 4 months ago

The FNM papa was the first to bend deep and it has all gone down hill from there.

0

John 1 year, 4 months ago

White man cant jump. So they also cannot justify

0

pingmydling 1 year, 4 months ago

That last comment is so wonderfully deep it is beyond this poor mortal's understanding. ( I wouldn't talk about punctuation & grammar).

0

akbar 1 year, 4 months ago

We will never satisfy the EU demands. This design to keep Switzerland as a banking giant who still benefiting from the ill gotten gains of the Nazis. I agree you have to draw the line. Lumping smaller jurisdictions with terror sponser states is really going too far. We need to take a note from the Caymans who rarely comply. Just stick to our lane and "soldier on".

1

akbar 1 year, 4 months ago

The goal posts will continue to move.

0

banker 1 year, 4 months ago

What nobody realises, is that we are on the slow road to becoming a failed state. The government deficits and debts are unsustainable. There is no way to pay them off. There would a helluva lot more economic pain if we told the EU to fook themselves. We are caught between a rock and hard place. Tourism is keeping us going, but the well is starting to run dry there. The effort to create a tech hub on Grand Bahama is a huge bust because Kwasi et al just don't know how to do it, and/or don't have the guts to take the plunge. They are all fatcats just collecting a salary while pretending to do something. There's another failed dream.

Bahamians are great talkers but not great doers. Anyone with vision is pushed aside. We have a huge population of largely useless human capital. Whenever any Bahamian gets to a place higher than his/her fellow man, they get all biggetty and think that they are infallible like the pope claims to be. All they do is enshrine their biases and ignorances and shower their largesse on their supporters just as a huge onanistic ego stroke.

We een gern nowhere but downhill. It een a fass ride, but the end een gern be pretty. The lucky ones will eat pigeons and coconuts. The conch, grouper and lobster will be all gone and the poor family islanders will be the Bahamians that are best off, because they already know how to live without the boats coming in erry day and making a small number of folks rich. One day, those Bahamian dollars will be useless.

0

Sign in to comment