In February this year the Chamber of Commerce distributed a State of Business Survey to member business owners and or key managerial staff to see how they were fairing in our current economic climate.
We appreciate the time spent by the 176 members who responded to the survey which clearly represented an even cross section of industry sectors in the membership responsible for large and small businesses.
The survey asked members to identify the main constraints for business growth, as well as the three top public policy priorities as they see it. Among other questions member businesses were asked to rate the current economy, the Cayman Islands as a place to conduct business, and whether the Cayman Islands government has become more responsive to their needs.
The survey results show that business operating fees are a main constraint for most businesses and that has rated as one of the top priorities that respondents wish the Chamber Council to address. Optimism still however remains fairly high with 80.9% of businesses rating their current level of confidence as good to fair.
The results of the survey are as follows:
- 36.6% of the respondents employed between 5-15 personnel
- Top 3 Industry Sectors: Financial Services, Services, Retail
- 59.2% of the respondents were the Owner, President or CEO of the company
- 41.9% of the respondents reported that profits decreased in 2011
- 54.4% of the respondents reported that they expect profits to increase in 2012
- 53.7% of the respondents plan to maintain operations in 2012
The Cayman Islands rated an “Average” on the following three questions:
- The current state of the Cayman Islands economy
- Cayman Islands as a place to do business
- Cayman Islands as a place to expand your business
Top 3 Constraints for Business Growth:
- Cost of doing business
- Operational costs
- Business fees
58.6% disagreed that the Cayman Islands economy improved in 2011
52% agreed That the Cayman Islands economy will improve in 2012
Most respondents thought their business would “Stay the same” over the next 12 months
80.9% of respondents rated their current level of confidence in the Cayman Islands economy as good to fair.
80.9% disagreed that the Cayman Islands Government has become more responsive to the needs of the business community.
The three top public policy priorities that respondents want the Chamber Council to address in 2012 included:
- Immigration, Pension Legislation, Cost of doing business.
- Reduction in WP fees, Improvement in welcome to arrivals at airport, more effective consultation between private sector, CIMA and CIG.
- Cost of Doing Business, Transparency in Public Office, Promotion of the Cayman Islands as a class leading destination.
Government spending, Government transparency, Help for small businesses.
Immigration, Duty Concessions, Training Initiative for Youth.
Please make effort to ask community for solidarity with the current government as the current divisiveness gives the wrong impression to the international community. We need to move ahead with projects.
Trade School for Caymanians only (old and young).
Negativity in the community, Addressing Exceptional service from all members of business, a watchdog with ratings for fair practice businesses, and lower ratings for those scalping the public.
Safety. If we lose the safe image of the Cayman Islands our tourism industry will be ruined.
Results are posted on www.caymanchamber.ky