Court em­brac­ing tech­nol­ogy Cen­tral Bank turns a profit

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - Front Page -

The ju­di­ciary is mov­ing into the tech­no­log­i­cal age in a ma­jor way.

Supreme Court regis­trar Bar­bara Cooke-al­leyne said yes­ter­day the court was tak­ing sev­eral steps to im­prove ef­fi­ciency by us­ing tech­nol­ogy.

Speak­ing to mem­bers of the me­dia af­ter a Caribbean Lead­er­ship De­vel­op­ment Net­work project at the Ann Hill School, Cooke-al­leyne said that the Supreme Court had re­cently re­ceived spe­cial record­ing equipment from both the Bri­tish High Com­mis­sion and the US Em­bassy.

She said this would as­sist the mag­is­trates since the ev­i­dence would be recorded, al­low­ing them to do more cases in a day.

Cooke-al­leyne ex­plained that she was also ex­cited about a High Court op­er­at­ing sys­tem re­view which was be­ing spon­sored by the Ju­di­cial Re­form and In­sti­tu­tional Strength­en­ing (JU­RIST) project.

Ad­di­tion­ally, the Supreme Court regis­trar said there were plans to have a case man­age­ment sys­tem by the next year, which would al­low peo­ple to for­ward doc­u­ments via email as well as make pay­ments on­line. ( AD)

Now re­leased

Ac­cord­ing to the 2016 an­nual re­port, which was trans­mit­ted to Min­is­ter of Fi­nance Chris Sinck­ler in late March, and has now been re­leased to the pub­lic, the bank’s in­come from for­eign sources fell by $6.6 mil­lion last year.

What’s more, “the sit­u­a­tion was ad­versely im­pacted by the need to liq­ui­date se­cu­ri­ties be­cause of the de­mand for for­eign ex­change”, the re­port re­vealed.

On this score, an ex­am­i­na­tion of the bank’s bal­ance sheet showed that when com­pared to 2015, its re­serve of ex­ter­nal as­sets fell by more than $313.3 mil­lion. Of this amount, the bank re­duced its cur­rent ac­counts and de­posits held in for­eign banks by more than $112 mil­lion, while in­vest­ments in for­eign bonds and deben­tures were cut by $139.1 mil­lion.

Based on the fi­nan­cial state­ments, its re­duced ap­petite for for­eign holdings came si­mul­ta­ne­ous with its heavy spend­ing on Gov­ern­ment trea­sury bills and deben­tures, which cre­ated money for the Fre­un­del Stu­art ad­min­is­tra­tion.

The large take-up of Gov­ern­ment paper was so preva­lent be­tween 2015 and last year, that the Cen­tral Bank pur­chased more than $1.7 bil­lion in trea­sury bills and deben­tures in that pe­riod, a $702.7 mil­lion in­crease.

It is be­cause of this that the bank was able to record a profit in its fi­nan­cial state­ments, Act­ing Gov­er­nor Cle­vis­ton Haynes re­ported. To­tal in­come in­creased by $25.7 mil­lion.

“The bank recorded a profit of $27.1 mil­lion dur­ing 2016. While the bank’s for­eign in­come was de­pressed by low coupons and the de­cline in for­eign ex­change re­serves avail­able for in­vest­ment, rev­enue from do­mes­tic se­cu­ri­ties more than com­pen­sated,” Haynes said.

The bank added that its do­mes­tic as­sets “grew sig­nif­i­cantly, as the bank pro­vided liq­uid­ity fund­ing to Gov­ern­ment through the pur­chase of trea­sury bills, trea­sury notes and deben­tures”.

Limit

“The statu­tory lend­ing limit in ad­vances to Gov­ern­ment was $264 mil­lion in ac­cor­dance with Gov­ern­ment’s es­ti­mates of rev­enue for the fis­cal year and amounts out­stand­ing were within the statu­tory limit,” the re­port stated.

When the fall in over­seas earn­ings was added to other sources of for­eign holdings, in­clud­ing more than $177 mil­lion held with the In­ter­na­tional Mone­tary Fund, the re­port showed that Bar­ba­dos’ for­eign re­serves fell by more than $239 mil­lion in 2016.

Last week, when he re­ported on the econ­omy’s per­for­mance be­tween Jan­uary and Septem­ber, Haynes said the re­serves fell by $133.9 mil­lion. This com­pared to $27 mil­lion in the same pe­riod last year.

It’s not just at home or even just at school, it’s ev­ery­where. Still, there are a lot of par­ents who could do bet­ter, es­pe­cially for young chil­dren. I think it’s how so­ci­ety is chang­ing. We are living in a dif­fer­ent era. No­body knows how to deal with so­cial me­dia and that is chang­ing the be­hav­iour of a lot of our young peo­ple. It’s not that par­ents are not setting the right ex­am­ples, I think it’s more me­dia and tech­nol­ogy – which is vast and open – that is to blame. Still, par­ents must mon­i­tor their chil­dren’s ac­tiv­i­ties. It could be due to fam­i­lies, but it’s not just that, as we have me­dia, and so­cial me­dia es­pe­cially, to blame. There are some fam­i­lies who be­have dif­fer­ently, but they may not think it is wrong. Yes, be­cause ev­ery­thing starts at home and while the school en­vi­ron­ment also mat­ters, it is a par­ent’s duty to guide their chil­dren in their ini­tial stages. To some ex­tent, yes. When chil­dren see their par­ents or sib­lings be­hav­ing a cer­tain way, then they mimic what they see.

COLLEEN FORDE, 30s AN­DER­SON CHERRY, 45

ALEXAN­DER BAI­LEY, 46

SHAKIRA GIT­TENS, 36

SI­MON WIL­LIAMS, 53

KELLY ARTHUR, 30s

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