The people did not get a carnival that they could be proud of, says Lovell


Carnival 2022 Lacked Private Sector Support Due to Unfavorable Business Climate Created by ABLP

Antigua’s Carnival failed to spur the level economic activity that was expected. This was mainly due to limited buy-in and participation by the private sector.

– Many vendors who do business with the government remain unpaid and were too cash strapped and lacked confidence to invest too much in Carnival.

– In this year’s Carnival parade, the majority of sponsors were government ministries or statutory organizations.  Government agencies sho

“In the absence of Government incentives for businesses emerging from the pandemic, businesses lacked confidence which led to limited private sector participation in Carnival.”  Lovell also noted poor attendance at most government-run events, whereas attendance hit record high levels at most Carnival fetes, that were coordinated by independent promoters.

“The only meaningful attendance and business activity during Carnival, was the fetes. Fete organizers got it right in delivering the best value for money. There was an explosion of new fetes on this year’s entertainment calendar and this signals the untapped potential for events tourism in Antigua and Barbuda, “ Lovell added.

Lovell raised concerns that the lack of private sector involvement signals low business confidence. Also the government’s failure to pay vendors owed for over a year, will likely affect the long term viability of these small businesses.

“Government shouldnt replace but look to partner with the private sector on joint development initiatives and serve as a constructive force in shaping a more enabling environment that ultimately draws in more private capital. “

The government should be available to share expertise and best practices to support private sector partners. But the current business model that relies primarily on government agencies for sponsorship dollars, will only stagnate the economy.

Lovell advises that the government should focus more on cultivating an enabling business environment that would give promoters, small businesses and others private sector players, the requisite tools and a level playing field to grow.

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  1. Carnival was an absolute disaster for patrons and business people. They had 2 years to plan and did nothing to improve Carnival. Was this 2 years of paid leave for the employees at the Festivals Office. Is better they privatise Carnival and stop wasting our money. Our culture is too precious to leave to chance.

  2. Antigua’s public sector is way way too top heavy, it cannot be sustained long term.

    I’m lucky to have worked equally in both private and public sectors and I can tell you that if any sector is unequally yoked you’ll have no end of problems.

    When the private sector is too high, it is normally to the detriment of the workers with low wages and bosses looking to weaken the unions and health and Safety laws.

    And equally, if the public sector has too many workers where two workers can do the job of one, then it’s the public purse that suffers with an overwhelming increase in taxes, whether indirect or directly.

    As the Honourable Harold Lovell points out, carnival was a small case in point of the current government’s overreach in the use of the publics money.

    The fact that Mr Lovell has highlighted this makes me realise that UPP is worth another chance …

  3. Lovell tap the bitchy behavior, u acting like a sissy. What did u expect after we where locked down. Am tired of u , u need to move out the way and give young ppl a chance. U are a sinking ship.

    • A sinking ship you say! That is funny because even the ABLP spokesman Peter Wickham say that UPP is a strong force. ABLP supporters living in a time warp.
      This is not 2014 and this is 2022. Get with the programme’

      Besides, the ABLP had 2 years to plan a good carnival. 2 years. But, as usual, the ABLP IS FULL OF EXCUSES.

      DON’T FORGET, the 2 billion dollars you got from the CIP. Where the money gorn.
      Instead you giving empty envelopes for prizes.

      Carnival was a disaster and you know it

      • he does get on your nerves, don’t?

      • Wow: “Just Saying”-be careful not to choke on your bile, bitterness and hatred because guess what, you are only hurting yourself! And in the meantime….

      • Why is it that in the main, the generational ABLP supporters lack clarity, coherence and lucidity in corresponding on these ANR threads?

        All I read is cussing, name calling and blind LOYALTY to a party that has caused untold damage to the country, the economy, infrastructure and to the citizens of Antigua & Barbuda.

        And yet, no criticism from them at all.


  4. I asked myself the question whether it was a ABLP Carnival. In the first place, they put in the Labour queen. Then all the floats were government floats. Listen to some of the calypsoes.
    The Labour party is choking culture to try to look good. Boy, this Carnival backfire on them.

  5. Someone did send me some videos of the parades from Antigua’s Carnival. Some of things I did see were mind boggling. Many of the women were almost naked. They left nothing for anyone’s imagination. I could not believe my eye,went to the Doctor to have them checked. LOL

    • I agree with wanna bee. I did not attend, but I saw many news photos of almost naked women. Carnival is too graphic for me to take my kids to watch any parades as we did when I was young. It’s a grown up event now. So, why not just change it to a set of private fetes and shows for those interested and do away with the national street parades that no one cares about? With all the concerns about crowding and health these days, do we even really need to bring back street parades?

  6. Worst Carnival in the history of Antigua. You are very right Harold. We can do better and you are the man with the plan.

  7. Michael Browne never showed any interest in culture- carnival, pan , mass , calypso. As you know you take a fisherman in Antigua snd put him as minister of health and today he is the best surgeon ever. So that was the first problem. Then the honorable PM on his radio station embarrassed the minister Samantha Marshall because the spoke person for Carnival.I blame the PM for placing Michael Browne as minister of carnival. Similarly Dorel Mathew show no interest in education. His shows more interest in carnival, Sports , construction . ABLP has square pegs in round holes.

  8. Here’s a thought ask the people who actually participated what they thought of Carnival. If the fetes did so well, which are privately funded, did the private sector not participate and benefit from the carnival season? Mr. Lovell when you played T-shirt Mas did the revelers say they were disappointed? They paid money and played did they not? Just curious who were persons disappointed with Carnival? It certainly couldn’t be the person’s who paid for everything they wanted to participate in and or attend.

    • @ when you don’t know you just don’t know.
      The floats were all government ministries or statutory organizations.
      Not the private sector
      In years past, many more people played mas. Look at the dismal showing of the parade. More cars and people wearing T-SHIRTS
      The population of the country is approximately 100,000.
      What per centage of the population went to the sold out fetes?
      Was it the majority of the population in your estimation?
      Did you see the LIAT workers?
      Did you see the CASS workers?
      Did you see the Solid Waste workers?
      Did you see the Clare Vu workers?
      Did you see the pensioners?
      The revellers who played mas you have stated had a good time. What about those who could not afford to play mas because they could not afford it. Just curious, did you interview them?

      The lucky ones who eat from the Gaston Browne table present the excuse that all is well in the country.
      Your insensitivity to those who are suffering is heartbreaking!

      • As usual we miss read to respond, and not to understand. I will make pelucid my statement- the persons that participated in Carnival are the persons we need to engage as to whether it was good or not. So the fact that the private sector did not participate in the parades or that persons did not jump up in bands or customs has little to do with government but rather a personal decision not to spend money that could be otherwise used to just simply live. I for one am happy that my people have decided what is best for themselves. Mr. Lovell made a decision for himself he played T-shirt Mas and went to fetes, his decision and his money or most likely, complimentary. Let me make my own decisions for me with what’s mine!!


      • @Starrie : Carnival had one large band and two small bands. What abundance of mas players are you talking about.
        It was mainly T-shirt mas in the parade.
        Yes the fetes were sold-out but as I said above, what per centage of the population attended these fetes?

  9. I am not a jump up person. But with all the posts I see and everybody raving about the good time they had, I am wondering who really have the gripe about carnival not being good. As soon as we don’t make the money we expected to make at these festivities, it’s never good and becomes political. Just say thank God for what you got and pray for better next time. This a blame Lovell, this a blame Gaston and all kinds a shit. We need to stop the blame game. Some of us sooooo affiliated to party and when things don’t go the way we want. Look a bitterness. We need to check ourselves!!

  10. @ please guide me to the posts that said everybody is having a good time!
    Is it the people playing mas?
    Is it the people who went to the fetes?
    Please inform me!

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