IT is an eastern Caribbean island nation that has hosted a Celtic music festival since the 1990s and even has its own official tartan in blue, yellow and black, with a broken trident marking the country’s split from the UK.
Now Barbados is coming to Edinburgh for a diplomatic and business event to showcase opportunities on the paradise island.
It will be held at the Norton House Hotel at Ingliston on Tuesday evening, hosted by Invest Barbados, the economic development agency of the government of Barbados and Business Friends of Barbados (Scotland).
Among the speakers will be the Barbados High Commissioner to the UK, Milton Innis, Kaye-Anne Brathwaite, CEO of Invest Barbados, and chairman of Business Friends of Barbados, Ian Gittens.
Barbados boasts ambitions to become a “digitally enabled nation” and is on track to achieving the goal of 100% renewable energy generation by 2030, delivering a carbon net-neutral target.
Investment opportunities include niche manufacturing, global banking, information and computer technology (ICT), food and drink, renewable energy, and medical tourism, amongst others.
The event comes after the announcement of Scotland’s only direct route to the Caribbean, with Virgin Atlantic launching a connection from Edinburgh to Bridgetown on December 5.
It is also a precursor to a trade mission to the island from Scotland, from November 22-27, the first in-person mission to Barbados since the start of the pandemic.
The innovative and successful Bajan “Welcome Stamp”, introduced at the start of the health crisis, is a talking point, enabling visitors to stay and work remotely on the island without changing their tax residency.
Barbados has historic links with Scotland, with strong Scottish immigration and its own Scotland District on its east coast, in the parish of Saint Andrew.
Since the 1990s, the island has hosted an annual Celtic Festival each spring – Covid permitting.
“Scotland has long and well-established links with Barbados and will become even more connected with the commencement of direct flights from Edinburgh in December,” said Brathwaite.
“Barbados remains an incredibly desirable place to do business and is a stable political and economic jurisdiction. Our welcoming investment climate compliments the enviable quality of life that we offer.
“Our novel Welcome Stamp has also proven globally popular, enabling individuals to stay and work remotely on the island without changing their tax residency.
“Barbados is a long-established hub for global business and you’re invited to grow your business here.”