Daily Brief- Thursday 9th March, 2023


DPP sounds alarm over failure to prosecute – NO JUSTICE FOR WHITE-COLLAR CRIMES

Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Gaspard, SC, says he is concerned and worried that it appears in TT, there are "deep problems" in bringing people accused of white-collar crimes to justice. His comment on Wednesday, came after public criciticms over his decision on Monday to end corruption charges against former prime minister Basdeo Panday, his wife Oma, former UNC government minister Carlos John and one-time party financier Ishwar Galbaransingh. Gaspard made his feelings known in a radio interview with hosts Dale Enoch and Tony Lee on their Morning Show on i95.5fm. Read more here

Activists: T&T not close to fully embracing gender equity

Women’s rights activists say while there is a lot to celebrate on International Women’s Day (IWD), focus must continue on the challenges impeding gender equality and equity. The experts, who have been championing various causes for women across society for years, lamented yesterday that old issues continue to plague the modern woman. They noted that substantive efforts are needed to ensure pledges made today are not overshadowed by celebrations. International days are critical to recognising, advocating and raising awareness of rooted issues. Yesterday, the global community seeks to dial in and realise a gender equal world through International Women’s Day. This year’s theme was Embrace Equity. Read more here



Young holding energy talks in Houston

Energy Minister Stuart Young is in Houston, Texas this week for the annual CERAWeek energy conference. The conference, hosted by international ratings agency Standard and Poors (S&P), provides a platform for discussion of a wide range of energy-related topics. Former US president Bill Clinton, Gates Foundation co-chair Bill Gates and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi have been among the speakers to deliver keynote speeches at this conference. In a post on his Facebook page, Young said at the conference, he "had a number of important engagements with key stakeholders in the energy industry at the global level to further progress Trinidad and Tobago’s energy sector development." Read more here

T&T opens doors to Caricom workers ... Amends Immigration Act to make access to jobs here easier

The Government has proclaimed legislation which will increase the number of people from Caricom member states who can enter and work in this country, as well as allow them to do so indefinitely. In a media statement yesterday, Foreign and Caricom Affairs Minister Dr Amery Browne announced the Proclamation of the Amendments to the Immigration (Caribbean Community Skilled Nationals) Act 2022 by President Paula-Mae Weekes. Minister Browne said the amendments “signal Trinidad and Tobago’s ongoing commitment to the deepening and strengthening of the regional integration process, and brings Trinidad and Tobago into compliance with decisions of the Conference of Heads of Government regarding the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas and the Free Movement Regime.” With the amendments, the expansion of the categories of workers eligible for free movement within the region moves from 5 (University graduates, artistes, musicians, media workers and sports people) to 12 categories. Read more here



Sew it is: Seamstresses make a comeback in clothing industry

Trade and Industry Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon's declaring there should be a local-content policy for Carnival costumes raises the question: are there enough skilled seamstresses and tailors to produce the volume needed to make this feasible? This year several large bands were not able to fulfil their masqueraders' orders, as there were problems shipping costumes from China, where they are usually ordered, because of the numbers needed and the lower cost. TT has a long tradition of people buying fabric and taking it to someone for sew. During the pandemic, many people turned to sewing to make extra money, for stress relief, and as a means of cutting costs. Read more here

Expert: Dragon Gas deal will benefit both T&T and Venezuela

Director of the Latin American Energy Program at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, Dr Francisco Monaldi believes that T&T and Venezuela will both benefit when they begin to exploit the Dragon Gas Field but there are many hurdles that they need to overcome before this happens. For many years both countries have been talking about exploring the cross-border gas reserves but nothing concrete has happened as yet. In 2007, then Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and then T&T’s Prime Minister Patrick Manning signed an accord to unify two offshore reserves of natural gas. “Venezuela is in a tough position based on a combination of things. They don’t have another outlet for their natural gas at this point. They were supposed to develop the Dragon Field close to the Hibiscus Field being operated by Shell on the Trinidadian side. Read more here



VP Jagdeo talks up Guyana’s achievements, potential in Texas

Vice - President, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo, has been engaging various officials in Texas, US, on the potential that exists in Guyana, among other things that would better position the country for more opportunities. Dr. Jagdeo, who is representing the country at CERAWeek 2023, held a discussion with Daniel Yergin, Vice Chairman of S&P Global. According to a post on the Vice-President’s official Facebook page, Yergin is a highly respected authority on energy, international politics, and economics. Read more here



Georgia drops 'foreign agents' law after protests

Georgia's ruling party has said it will withdraw a controversial draft law, in the face of mass protests and widespread international criticism. Thousands of protesters have taken to the streets in Tbilisi this week in anger as a Russian-style law began its passage through parliament. Under the bill, non-government groups and media would be targeted if they take over 20% of funding from abroad. The main ruling party said it was pulling the bill "unconditionally". Describing itself as a party of government responsible to all members of society, Georgian Dream referred to the need to reduce "confrontation" in society. Read more here

9th March 2023


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