Daily Brief - Tuesday 27th September, 2022

TTMA IN THE NEWS

TTMA commends Govt for stabilizing economy post-COVID

President of the T&T Manufacturers’ Association (TTMA) Tricia Coosal has commended the Government in ensuring the economy continues to stabilise and grow following the impact of COVID-19 and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war. Following yesterday’s budget presentation by Finance Minister Colm Imbert, Coosal noted the measures outlined saying, “The importance of ensuring the ease of doing business was once again stressed by the minister via the pledge of digitization though the strengthening of the Single Electronic Window and implementation of the electronic fund transfer framework to allow businesses to make payments to the Government by the business community…these are needed and welcomed initiatives.” According to Coosal the TTMA also advocated for a more efficient tax collecting mechanism, stressing the importance of widening the tax net as opposed to further burdening the already compliant population of the country. Read more here

 

NEWS

Tobago gets $2.5b of national budget

The Tobago House of Assembly (THA) has received an allocation of $2.5 billion to manage its affairs over the next year. Making the announcement on Monday in his presentation of the 2022-2023 budget in the Red House, Port of Spain, Finance Minister Colm Imbert said the sum represents 4.3 per cent of the $57.6 billion budget. “Consistent with what we provided the PNM-led administration in the THA between 2016 and 2021, we are allocating the new PDP-led THA 4.3 per cent of the total national budget in 2023,” he said. The THA wanted $3.97 billion. Read more here

Weather Forecast – Tuesday 27 September 2022 

For TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO… A Riverine Flood Alert #1 (YELLOW Level) is in effect.  Areas affected include Southern Trinidad, specifically communities surrounding the South Oropouche River and its tributaries; and parts of Western Tobago, namely communities along the Crooks and Bacolet Rivers. The South Oropouche River is very near its capacity and may have already breached its bank in some parts, with water spilling into surrounding communities in South Trinidad that are prone to flooding. There is expected to be an increase in the volume of water into this main watercourse with added rainfall from intermittent showers and isolated thunderstorms expected during the course of today. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Rowley: Higher energy prices factor in fuel price increase

Energy prices have changed, so the Government had to make adjustments, was how the Prime Minister explained the increase in fuel prices during the 2023 budget. On Monday, during the budget presentation at the Red House, the Finance Minister, Colm Imbert, announced the prices of premium, super and kerosene increased by $1 a litre while diesel increased by 50 cents. He said while other countries taxed fuel, TT subsidised it, so the country’s response to the energy crisis would be different. The reason the Government did not further increase diesel prices, he said, was because it would have caused major price increases in other sectors. Read more here

Imbert: Govt can pay 4% hike quickly if unions accept but ..Any more will wreck economy

Government stands ready to make good on its four per cent offer concerning public sector negotiations as soon as it is accepted - but if trade unions choose to send these negotiations to the Industrial Court, Government will ask that these matters be expedited. "... So that we can act swiftly in accordance with the Court’s decision," Finance Minister Colm Imbert said during yesterday's 2023 Budget address. Imbert had said Government was prepared to raise the required funding for backpay for its current offer quickly "and to make these payments promptly, as well as appropriate adjustments to the budgetary appropriation to cater for the recurrent increases in salaries and wages." Read more here

 

BUSINESS

T&T Chamber and San Juan Business Association express concern about fuel price hike

The T&T Chamber of Industry and Commerce says while it understands the need to limit the fuel subsidy, it is concerned about the impact this will have on inflation and the population at this time. In a release yesterday the Chamber said while Finance Minister Colm Imbert presented an “optimistic” 2023 national budget, it however, remains reserved about significant impacts on the economy. The Chamber explained that despite the ongoing socio-economic challenges posed by inflation, which have been heightened with the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict and geo-political tensions, the windfall revenue has seen the budget deficit reduced to $2 billion, from $9 billion in 2022. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Trade between Guyana, US tops US$1.4B

Trade between Guyana and the United States of America (US) amounted to US$1.4 billion in the first half of 2022, according to US Ambassador Sarah-Ann Lynch. We are certainly committed to improving prosperity here in Guyana and a big part of that is the bilateral trade and partnerships. The United States is proud to be Guyana’s largest bilateral trading partner with bilateral trade eclipsing $1.4 billion US in the first half of this year alone,” Ambassador Lynch said during her address at a forum on effective strategies for exporting to the US, on Monday. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Shinzo Abe: A divided Japan bids farewell to its slain ex-PM

In a black kimono Shinzo Abe's widow Akie walked slowly, carrying her husband's ashes in a silk-covered funeral urn. She placed it on a wide altar covered in white chrysanthemums. Above it hung a huge photo of Abe, Japan's longest-serving prime minister. Only once before in Japan's post-war history has a politician been given a state funeral - and Tuesday's event to honour Abe has stirred huge controversy. It drew thousands of guests - local and global leaders, notably from Japan's closest allies. But it also faced a backlash as protesters marched against the decision to hold the funeral. It's a day and an event that appears to have cut Japanese society down the middle. And it's a sign of Abe's complicated and often divisive legacy. Read more here

 

27th September 2022

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