The Democratic Workers' Party (DLP) has been
ruling Barbados since 2008. The party managed to retain
the government's power in the 2013 elections by a
In the February 2013 parliamentary elections, DLP won
just over 52 percent of the vote against just under 48
for the Barbados Workers' Party (BLP). Prime Minister
Freundel Stuart, who has succeeded DLP leader David
Thompson as head of government in 2010 since he died of
cancer, became only 48 years old.
The re-election was unexpected when opinion polls
indicated that BLP would regain power. The DLP
government took office in the midst of the world economy
crisis, which hit hard on tourism-dependent Barbados.
DLP was therefore forced during its first term to
implement unpopular austerity measures such as increased
VAT and energy tax and increased prices for bus tickets.
BLP promised in its election campaign to stimulate the
economy, but thus failed to convince voters.
Country facts and history of Barbados, including state flag, location map, demographics, GDP data, currency code, and business statistics.
Prime Minister Stuart said after the election victory
that the government's policy was firm, despite the
strained economic situation. However, international
credit rating agencies have continued to lower the
country's credit rating, which means that it has become
more expensive and more difficult for Barbados to borrow
Following the election, Owen Arthur resigned as
leader of the BLP and was succeeded by lawyer Mia
Mottley. The following year, Arthur left the party and
became politically savage in parliament. Internal
fragmentation also led to a member of parliament being
excluded from the BLP at the end of 2015. Internal
contradictions also occurred in the DLP where, among
other things, the Minister of Agriculture criticized his
own government for the fisheries policy being pursued.
Crime, not least against foreign tourists, continues
to be a problem for the government. Several incidents
contributed to Canada, the United Kingdom and the United
States issuing travel warnings regarding Barbados at the
end of 2015 due to the increase in violent crime.
In 2016, the government received criticism both in
connection with a strike action at the international
airport and because of the handling of a waste
incineration plant. Since two credit rating agencies
once again lowered Barbados credit rating, the
opposition cast a vote of no confidence, but it was
voted down by 16 votes to 12.
FACTS - POLITICS
monarchy, unitary state
Head of State
Queen Elizabeth II
Head of government
Freundel Stuart (2010–)
Most important parties with mandates in the
Democratic Workers 'Party (DLP) 16, Barbados Workers'
Party (BLP) 14 (2013)
Main parties with mandates in the second most
Democratic Workers 'Party (DLP) 20, Barbados Workers'
Party (BLP) 10 (2008)
about 60% in the 2013 parliamentary elections
parliamentary elections by 2018