Daily Brief - Thursday 17th October, 2019


Sweet victory for A and J

The husband-and-wife team of Anthony and June-Ann Henry has copped the coveted TT Manufacturers Association (TTMA) manufacturer of the year award for their A and J Homemade Ice Cream brand, which has amassed an impressive reputation since its debut four years ago. The awards ceremony took place on October 8, at the Hyatt Regency, Port of Spain. While the accolade represents a major milestone, the road to success has not been an easy one, as the couple had to nurture not only their business but also their one-year-old daughter, while dealing with the harsh realities of bottom lines, meeting customer demands and finding value for money with equipment and space. Read more here

Private sector accused of being lazy

The pri­vate sec­tor must play a big­ger role in dri­ving the na­tion’s econ­o­my said Ryan Lewis, Di­rec­tor, Trinidad and To­ba­go Man­u­fac­tur­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion (TTMA). “The bud­get is read and done by the Gov­ern­ment but the big­ger ques­tion is what is the pri­vate sec­tor do­ing. That is where the jobs will be, where you all are look­ing for. A lot of you all will want to go in­to new in­no­v­a­tive busi­ness­es. So what is the pri­vate sec­tor do­ing to pro­vide more jobs for you? I be­lieve in the last 10 years the pri­vate sec­tor has been lazy. I think that the pri­vate sec­tor has been de­pen­dent on the Gov­ern­ment.” Read more here



UWI plants 105 breadfruit trees

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (UNFAO) says over 820 million people suffer from chronic malnourishment worldwide, while 672 million people are obese. These alarming statistics were presented by the dean of UWI’s Faculty of Food and Agriculture (FFA), Wayne Ganpat, to participants of the UWI’s 2019 World Food Day celebrations, hosted under the theme: Healthy diets to build a zero-hunger world. It took place at UWI’s Agricultural Innovation Park in Orange Grove. As he highlighted the figures, Ganpat said, “We have undernourishment and hunger and on the other hand we have obesity and malnutrition. “These worldwide statistics are reflected in our own agriculture in TT.” This problem, he noted, was not only a global one but hit closer to home. Read more here

Van Dyke slams Moonilal’s ‘fake news’

CEO of Sun­stone Eq­ui­ty John Van Dyke yes­ter­day slammed Op­po­si­tion MP Dr Roodal Mooni­lal for spread­ing fake news ‘like US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’ and be­ing a ‘pet­ty politi­cian’ as the coun­try ap­proach­es the De­cem­ber 2 lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tion. Van Dyke was re­spond­ing yes­ter­day to Mooni­lal who in his bud­get con­tri­bu­tion on Tues­day called on the Oil­field Work­ers Trade UNion (OW­TU) pres­i­dent An­cel Ro­get, Move­ment for So­cial Jus­tice head David Ab­du­lah and him to an­swer whether for­mer Peo­ple’s Na­tion­al Move­ment can­di­date Vidya De­ok­iesingh was in­volved in set­ting up a meet­ing at the premis­es of A&V Drilling with re­spect to Petrotrin re­fin­ery sale. Read more here



‘Puerile’ Imbert playing games

Couva North MP Ramona Ramdial yesterday described Finance Minister Colm Imbert as “puerile” during the meeting of the Standing Finance Committee in Parliament. She made the comment as the committee reviewed the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government. Ramdial asked Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein about the 2019 revised estimate for Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo, which showed an allocation of $27 million for goods and services, a reduction from the $37 million originally estimated. She asked the reason for the $8 million decrease. Hosein said Imbert had previously answered the question, and then Imbert asked which page Ramdial was referring to. “Page 313, I just said it,” Ramdial shot back. Government members then “oohed” and commented, “Watch she gold chain.” Read more here

Health Ministry faces lawsuit for allowing facility to stay open

The fam­i­ly of a man who died while housed at the Trans­formed Life Min­istries Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre last year, is con­sid­er­ing su­ing the Min­istry of Health for its al­leged neg­li­gence in al­low­ing the fa­cil­i­ty to be op­er­at­ed. At­tor­neys rep­re­sent­ing the rel­a­tives of War­ren Man­gal sig­nalled their in­ten­tion in a pre-ac­tion pro­to­col sent to Health Min­is­ter Ter­rence Deyals­ingh and the Of­fice of the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al, yes­ter­day af­ter­noon. Read more here



Wealth creation for all

Guardian Asset Management (GAM) has become the first investment company in the Caribbean to introduce a robo-advisor platform, ushering a new wave of options for investors. Robo-advisor platforms are a relatively new innovation in the fintech landscape, coming into favour more recently, on a global scale, with millennials and tech-savvy individuals. A robo-advisor is essentially an online wealth management service that provides algorithmic portfolio management, so portfolios are automatically selected, invested and rebalanced but the work of creating the investment portfolios, perhaps for now, remains the domain of people. The primary benefit is that the overall cost of investing is reduced, in turn allowing reduced fees versus traditional, financial advisory channels which have higher minimums and are built as needed on a more personal level. Read more here

BHP drills dry hole in T&T Deep Water

BHP, the Aus­tralian out­fit drilling in T&Ts deep wa­ter has an­nounced that its lat­est well, Car­ni­val-1 failed and was a dry hole. This means that nei­ther oil nor gas was found in the well and it was plugged and aban­doned. In its op­er­a­tional re­view the com­pa­ny said it drilled two well in what it called its north­ern li­cences, one en­coun­tered hy­dro­car­bons while the oth­er was a dry hole. It read: “In Trinidad and To­ba­go, we drilled two ad­di­tion­al ex­plo­ration wells in our North­ern li­cences as a part of Phase 4 of our deep-wa­ter drilling cam­paign. The Boom-1 well was spud on 28 Au­gust 2019 and en­coun­tered hy­dro­car­bons. “Eval­u­a­tion and analy­sis is on­go­ing. The Car­ni­val-1 well was spud on 30 Sep­tem­ber 2019 and reached to­tal depth af­ter the end of the Sep­tem­ber 2019 quar­ter. The well was a dry hole.” Read more here



Pride Shames Church Protesters - Mayor Obtains Stay Against Ruling Granting Interim Access

A gay-rights group will head to court today to challenge a ruling by the Court of Appeal granting a stay to the interim order allowing them to host a controversial debate on same-sex marriage at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre in St James. The latest twist emerges after Montego Bay Mayor Homer Davis’ attorney filed an appeal yesterday. Amid withering criticism by civil and church organisations, Montego Bay Pride leader Maurice Tomlinson has accused the St James municipal authorities of using the issue as a “political football”. Tomlinson, founder and development coordinator of the gay group, has been embroiled in a court dispute with the city’s mayor over the right to host the forum in the civic centre, a public building. Read more here



The DUP says "No"

There we have it. The Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland, whose 10 MPs nominally prop up Boris Johnson's government in the UK Parliament, have definitively rejected his deal, saying they won't vote for it on Saturday. "We have been consistent that we will only ever consider supporting arrangements that are in Northern Ireland's long-term economic and constitutional interests and protect the integrity of the Union. These proposals are not, in our view, beneficial to the economic well-being of Northern Ireland and they undermine the integrity of the Union." Read more here

Turkey's Erdogan 'threw Trump's Syria letter in bin'

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan put US President Donald Trump's letter "in the bin", the BBC has been told. In the letter dated 9 October, and sent after US troops were pulled out of Syria, Mr Trump told Mr Erdogan: "Don't be a tough guy. Don't be a fool!" President Trump was urging Turkey not to launch a military offensive against Kurdish-led forces in northern Syria, but Mr Erdogan ignored this request. US Vice President Mike Pence is now in Ankara to push for a ceasefire. The US has faced intense criticism for the withdrawal of troops, which critics say gave Turkey the green light to launch the military attack. Read more here

17th October 2019


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