Global Business Cultural Analysis Barbados

7 July 2016

The purpose of this research paper is to analyze the cultural viewpoint of doing business in the nation of Barbados according to the major elements and dimensions of culture including: communication, religion, ethics, customs, social structure, organization, and education. It will provide how these dimensions and elements are implemented by local conducting business. Also, explains on how the culture and business of Barbados differs from the United States. Other information researched includes international relationships, political systems, business risk and impact of global expansion. Global Business Cultural Analysis: Barbados

Barbados is a Caribbean island which is well-known as a tourist destination. Barbados has been a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), since 1995. The World Trade Organization deals with the rules or agreements in trade at a domestic and global level. Many nations are involved in the WTO since mostly all have some kind of natural resource that is bringing income to the island. Sugar is one of the main products, which has made Barbados a successful export business nation. The economic growth of Barbados results in the change from sugar being an important export, to tourism having an even more profound effect on the nation’s economy.

Global Business Cultural Analysis Barbados Essay Example

The name Barbados came from a Portuguese explorer named Pedro Campos, who had stopped at the island before traveling on to Brazil. He named the island “Los Barbados”, which means the bearded ones as the fig trees and the way they hung gave a look of a beard. Barbados was inhabited until the British settled in the year 1625; by Captain John Powell who claimed the island for King James I. Two years later on February 17, 1627 his brother Henry Powell came with 80 Englishman settling and 10 African slaves to work the land, even though most of the slaves did not survived the long trip.

In 1629 the slave population increased to 50 and consisted of Amerindian and African people. The Amerindian settlers were known to be competent farmers who grew cotton and fruits. Cotton was used to make hammocks. Today, Caribbean islands, South American and Central American countries use them at parks and backyard to rest as well as swing. The economy in those early years consisted of family farms and their various produce such as aloes, fustic (which was used to dye wood) cotton, and tobacco. At that time Barbados had few slaves since it had just been inhabited. There were few settlers and not many slaves were able to be bought.

Europeans put a trade fort in West Africa where slaves were brought in after raids in tribal villages. Some of these tribal names were Paw-Paw, Ibos, and Eboes. The forts received goods as form of payment to transport slaves to Barbados. Watches, rings, and pendants considered to be trinkets were things given in the forts. Once they arrived to the island, slaves were to be enslaved for life including any children they had while on the island, as was the law passed. During this year it was noted that only 22 black people were free from this law. Slaves were taught by the Amerindians on how to cultivate the land.

The output of cotton and tobacco were decreasing due to the lack of good labor conditions. Products were exported but to no success and caused the plantations to stop growing them in or around late 1630’s. The failure of the tobacco and cotton plantations brought the Dutch over to Barbados to assist the English to produce sugar. Sugar plantation made money for the owners but there were both positive and negative effects to this change. The negative aspect was that slaves worked the plantation who came from West Africa were troubled because of their new enslaved condition.

This created problems when groups developed that consisted of the following; whites, half European, half African, and blacks. The statistics back then 1600’s “37,000 whites and 6,000 blacks”. (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2014). The sugar plantations increased the profit for the earlier settlers, because in this era sugar was uncommon. The money that entered Barbados from the sugar plantations brought political power to the owners who were controlling the economic aspects as well as in governmental offices. Land owners made it known to the slaves that they were the authority figure and they should not try to get out of line.

“Its House of Assembly, which began meeting in 1639, is third-oldest legislative body in the Western Hemisphere, preceded only by Bermuda’s legislature and the Virginia House of Burgesses” (Country Watch, Inc. , 2014) . This government wrote a democratic constitution which was used as a template by “the American Founding Fathers” (Country Watch, 2014) to draw up the United States Constitution. Sugar plantations were a successful commercial enterprise which raised a split in Barbados between large plantations and the early small farms resulting in these small farmers to leave.

“Some of the displaced farmers relocated to British colonies in North America” (Barbados, 2011). In the years between 1663 through 1669 Barbados was hit with many natural disasters such as a locust plague, Bridgetown fire, a hurricane, drought and in other times too much rain which added to the island’s financial problems. Yet, the natural disasters did not stop the business men from investing in the sugar plantation and buying slaves. Between the years of 1640 and 1807 approximately 400,000 African slaves were taken to Barbados to work the sugar plantations. The ratio by 1850 was two black slaves to one white master.

Thirty years later the ratio had increased to four black slaves to one white master. Slave trade was declared illegal in 1807, yet any slave who was already in Barbados was not freed due to them being on the island before 1807. The emancipation of 1834 freed the slaves but they still lived in poverty. Being freed did not mean living the luxury life. Owners of the plantations had slaves from 7 years old and older work for six years with no pay as an apprentice. These former slaves did not have the same rights as whites so they kept working on the plantation for low wages since jobs in other profession were few.

“On Sunday April 14th, 1816 saw the first slave uprising on this island for 124 years” (FunBarbados, 2014). “The Bussa Rebellion” (FunBarbados, 2014) being led by a slave named Bussa who worked on a large plantation called Bayley’s Plantation. Many years passed and Bussa was considered a Barbadian National hero and 169 years after the up-rise the Emancipation Statue was dedicated to his memory. After, slavery was many citizens of Barbados focused on the great education that was available on the island.

Since the slaves were getting the education, their plantation job was not what they wanted for themselves. They went out for governmental jobs and other work in different professions but there was some still worked in the plantations. Those workers who kept working on the plantation had a 45 hour week without pay in exchange for a room and board. The actual freedom of slaves came in the year 1838 with over 700,000 Barbadians of African descent. Sugar was great income to the island until 1930 when the Great Depression hit not only affecting Barbados but many countries throughout the world.

As much as 50% of the sugar prices dropped which caused chaos in Barbados. There was high unemployment and hard times for many Barbadians. Riots broke out during this time because the British government which ruled Barbados, invested money to form the Colonial Welfare and Development offices. The agencies gave the Barbadians and other British who ruled island money to assist them in this time of need. “The spread of socialist ideology and the black nationalist movement of the Jamaican leader Marcus Garvey had created conditions for a labour revolt” (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2014).

During this time the middle class reformers were getting angry because of laws which consisted of the limitation of voting only to males, men who had money and land ownership. This caused many social services to be not dependable. In 1938 a gentleman named Grantley Adams helped to form the Barbados Labour Party to assist the social protest due to inequality of the blacks who were now free. When World War II broke out, many of the British colonies faced change including Barbados. Adams was the first premier whose work was to change things in the culture area as well as the constitution.

Great Britain gave the Barbadian government complete control over internal issues. Mr. Grantley Adams was a leader of the trade union movement which gave him the nickname “Father of Independence” (Fun Barbados, 2014). Barbados tried many times to form a federation but, but this caused the island to seek its independence. In June of 1966 Barbados and United Kingdom met, and after many meetings the independence was granted to Barbados in November 30, 1966. Since this independence Barbados has been a stable and a democratic country.

The independence of Barbados made a great impact in transforming the island from a low income population when sugar plantation was exploding an upper middle income when tourism was introduced. Tourism has made the Barbados economy flourish. After three centuries of sugar being the main source of income to the island, there was a change in the island. The makeover of Barbados made the new source of income “service oriented economy” (Williams 2003). It has been known that in 1751, George Washington visited the island with his half- brother who had tuberculosis to cure his illness in the nice climate.

The area of tourism had wealthy people as well as companies invest money, which opened up many jobs for the citizens of the island. The vast majority of the tourists; who visit Barbados are from the United Kingdom, United States, and other Caribbean islands. The Barbados Ministry of Tourism in 2001 states, “the political administration’s vision of transforming the country into a high quality export service economy, with fully developed tourism and hospitality industry as its chief engine of growth” (Lords, Francis, & Drakes 2011).

The number one source is foreign exchange which has brought 80% of the income into Barbados. Tourism was being considered the export-based approach due to the investments made for hotels, restaurants, and clean beaches had increased employment. Barbados met with the Southeast Asian Tigers which consisted of Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan to try and mirror their success in tourism. Foreign exchange in Barbados was due to construction and buying raw materials to renovate the island for the tourists. Tourism has a high season and low season.

The high season for tourists to go to Barbados is in the winter months in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and other European countries. In those months of winter the economy grows with many visitors coming to soak in the sun. Barbados has been known to have a stable growth in the economy for eight years consecutively 1993-2000. When the Twin Towers were hit on September 11, 2001tourism dropped drastically all over the world Barbados included. The economy started to improve around 2004 and by 2006 when it grew by 3. 8%. Cruise ships dock in Barbados for

people to sightsee, and go on an excursion which has contributed to the growth of the economy. The clean and beautiful sandy beaches have been an attraction for peace and comfort to those people who have a hectic life. Barbados introduced sports tourism which has been on the rise. The government developed a few sporting facilities for special events. Major sports events have been known to take place all over the word such as New York Marathon, Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Tournament in Great Britain, and Adelaide grand Prix in Australia.

Each of the mentioned events are seasonal: Barbados is known for the nice weather and can sponsor sporting events all year round. In the last ten years the island has hosted several sporting events such as cricket and field hockey. The government had two objectives in sporting tourism, first to build or renovate sporting facilities in order for the Barbadian athletes to play with other countries in field hockey as well as cricket and second was to have tourists to arrive all year round whether for vacation, conference or sporting event.

This way income comes in regularly to the island. Four sporting arenas hosted important events such as The Barbados National Stadium hosted soccer, cycling, and football games. Cycling event attracts people from all over the world such as Canada, Russia, and England. The Kensington Oval is known for the cricket games during the months January thru April. Cricket games in Barbados attract people from England, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and India. Due to these international matches held in Barbados, a League and Association for cricket has been formed.

The Kensington Oval is used for field hockey games which are considered to be one of the fastest growing sports today. This sport is called soccer in the United States. There are also women who have formed an association. The Garrison Savannah sponsors horse racing which runs from January to April then again from August to November. In the year 1992 a company named Cockspur Rum sponsored a horse race that paid the highest prize and had a lot of covered from newspaper and television. The Wildey Sports Complex was built to hold a variety of sporting events.

It was an extravagant facility which has air condition gymnasium, six lawn-tennis courts, and an Aquatic Centre which has an Olympic-size pool. The pool is the training facility for the local swimming team and water polo. Children with special needs also come to the facility to use the amenities for therapy for the blind and handicapped. Barbados also hosted surfer tournaments, which includes the participation of USA, Brazil, France, Venezuela, Trinidad & Tobago, Puerto Rico, Martinique and Guadeloupe.

Golf is an up-rising sport that had Barbados built an 18-hole golf course named Sandy Lane. Tourism contributes to most of the income in Barbados, although offshore banking and financial services have been on the rise and it’s considered to be an important part of foreign exchange. Sugar was the dominant in the economy growth but now it makes up only 1% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and approximately 500 people work on the export of sugar. In 1993 Barbados introduced a financial place for business to come due to the island being popular with the tourism sector.

Insurance companies, the International Business Companies (IBC), foreign sales corporations, and offshore banking were growing. Barbados has had a variety of tax treaties which included discussions with many foreign countries to invest money in the island. Offshore banking has moved up on the government’s priority which has caused laws to be established exempting partnerships, trusts, and mutual companies. Barbados has formed a few services to what over the offshore banking because just like everything there is a positive side and a negative side.

The services or groups have to oversee that no unwanted company comes to Barbados to commit fraudulent acts. The government knows they need to maintain rules to the offshore banking companies so they don’t give Barbados a bad reputation in the business circle as well as in the tourist sector. There have been tax treaties made with other countries like United States, Britain, Canada, Switzerland, Finland, Sweden and Norway. Furthermore, Euromoney stated, “the final ingredient need to build a successful offshore financial services centre is good infrastructure; both in transport and business” (1994).

The United States and Barbados had signed a treaty in regards to narcotics moving across both countries, extradition consists of minor common offenses; organize crime, and conspiracy of any form. Another treaty signed between the United States and Barbados in 1991 was to amend the original treaty from 1987 for taxes. The change in tax rate went from 12. 5% to 5%, this is done to attract joint venture connection. A report came out in 2012 where the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) found that Barbados made better the standard international for a project which had to begin in 2013.

The island had been starting projects to save energy as well as looking into drilling for oil. In conclusion, Barbados is a Caribbean island which imports materials to build and renovate housing, sightseeing attractions and sport facilities to have the economy grow in all sectors. The export the island has is sugar, tourism, and off shore banking much more has been and incentive for visitors to come for either personal or business. The relocation of businesses to Barbados has been on the rise for years, there are some ups and downs but the Barbadians keep striving for better.

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