Daily Brief- Friday 8th September, 2017

TTMA In The News

TIC aims for more exhibitors next year 

The Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturers Association (TTMA) launched its 19th annual Trade and Investment Convention (TIC) on Wednesday at the Five Star Casino, Price Plaza, Chaguanas, setting a target of a six per cent increase in the number of booths, from 246 last year to 260 this year. Read more here



No Way Jose

Already battered by deadly Hurricane Irma, Antigua and Barbuda is today bracing for a new threat---Hurricane Jose, which is forecast to become a “destructive category four system”. Jose has been churning in the Atlantic closely on the heels of Irma which remains a monster category five storm. Irma devastated Barbuda as she rampaged through the Lesser Antilles and northern Caribbean on Wednesday, killing ten people, among them a two year- old in Barbuda. Even as Prime Minister Gaston Browne pondered how to begin the reconstruction of the tiny island, came an updated forecast that Jose, which at 6 pm yesterday was still a strong category three hurricane, would strengthen to a “destructive category four system” placing Antigua and Barbuda under a hurricane watch once more. “We are very worried about Hurricane Jose,” Browne declared according to a report by The Washington Post. Read more here

CAL cancels flights

As Hurricane Irma is expected to make its landfall in the United States this weekend, Caribbean Airlines (CAL) has cancelled a dozen flights directly affected. All flights in and out of Kingston and Montego Bay, Jamaica; Nassau, Bahama; Fort Lauderdale, Miami and Orlando in Florida on September 10 (Sunday) were cancelled. Passengers have been advised to contact its reservation offices for rebooking on the next available service. Affected customers travelling on September 10, 2017 will be permitted to change or cancel their reservations without penalty subject to the following conditions: Passengers must have a confirmed ticket issued before September 10, 2017; Passengers who choose to have their tickets refunded, must do so by September 17, 2017; Passengers who choose to change their reservations, must complete their travel by September 17, 2017, unless travel on the original booking was after this date. Read more here

‘Not sure who will perform autopsies’ 

Forensic pathologist Dr Valery Alexandrov has resigned. His resignation was effective August 31, but Alexandrov said he was asked to stay on for another week by the Ministry of National Security. Read more here



Wife: Cuffie is progressing

Minister of Public Administration and Communications Maxie Cuffie remains in hospital but doctors are happy with how he is progressing, his wife Hermia Tyson- Cuffie told Newsday yesterday. She thanked members of the public for their ardent prayers and their text messages of well-wishes for Cuffie’s recovery. Tyson-Cuffie did not give details of Cuffie’s “medical episode” that occurred on Tuesday, as reported by the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), but she told Newsday that he had a strong heart. Read more here

Please break your silence

How did Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley have the confidence to tell citizens that Opposition MP Roodal Moonilal will be brought before the courts? That’s the question Israel Khan SC has officially put to Acting of Commissioner Police Stephen Williams on Moonilal’s behalf. Khan sent a letter on the issue to Williams on Tuesday. The move is the fall-out from the remarks Rowley made about Moonilal when the PM spoke at a media briefing last Friday before he left for a US medical check-up. Rowley alluded then to a warrant he claimed Moonilal was “under” and also alluded to “when” Moonilal “appears in court” under the warrant. Read more here

Khan: There would be some disappointment

People's National Movement (PNM) chairman Franklin Khan says Government is now analysing two opinion polls which gave the party unfavourable ra­tings in its two years as a Government. He however added as far as he sees it, Government has not lost popularity. He said he was not troubled by one poll giving former prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar a higher performance rating than Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley. Read more here



IDB hosts second Caribbean regional policy dialogue on environment

Environmental permitting and compliance will be the focus of a regional policy dialogue hosted by the Planning and Development Ministry in conjunction with The Inter-American Devel- opment Bank (IDB), at Hyatt Regency, Port-of- Spain from September 20 - 21. The IDB’s country representative for Trinidad and Tobago (TT), Tomás Bermudez, says “research and experience have proven that safeguards can anticipate and mitigate environmental and social risks effectively. Therefore, focusing on increasing knowledge, capacity and implementation of environmental licensing and compliance is beneficial to the region.” Here in TT, the IDB is assisting with improving the existing wastewater management program and services in the Malabar and San Fernando catchments. The measures include support for the wastewater rehabilitation program and the implementation of institutional and policy reforms. Read more here

Lashley appointment above board

Energy Minister Franklin Khan says there is nothing underhanded about the appointment of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Energy, Selwyn Lashley, to the board of Petrotrin. Speaking during a committment ceremony of a new Memorandum of Understanding on the Implementation Of The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative yesterday, Khan said, “I am the line minister and Mr. Lashley did in fact consult the head of the Public Service, Mr. Murray Suite who is the permanent secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister and from that level, he had no objection to his appointment.” Asked if it was a wise move to appoint Lashley, given his former interactions with the trade union - Khan responded, “The Petrotrin board was a collective Cabinet decision.” Read more here

Nestle freshens up its image with vegetarian meals takeover

The maker of Hot Pockets wants to go vegetarian, California-style. Nestle, the world's biggest food and drinks company, is buying husband-and-wife startup Sweet Earth, which sells frozen burritos stuffed with quinoa, beans and other vegetarian ingredients. The move echoes efforts by packaged food conglomerates across the world that have been trying to appeal more to consumers who favor fresher foods, smaller, local brands and are worried about the ingredients they eat. Nestle, whose frozen food brands include Lean Cuisine and Stouffer's, recently invested in online meals company Freshly, which delivers cooked meals to customer's doorsteps that it says are gluten-free and don't contain refined sugars. In 2012, Campbell Soup bought natural foods maker Bolthouse Farms. And on Thursday, rival Unilever said it was buying Pukka Herbs, a small but fast-growing organic herbal tea business. Read more here



No ID, No Access - J'cans Will Need National Identification Card To Access Gov't Goods, Services

Under the Government's proposed National Identification System (NIDS), Jamaicans without a National Identification Card (NIC) will not be able to do business with government agencies and departments when it is rolled out in 2019. Additionally, persons without the national ID might also face serious challenges as they seek to do business with the private sector. "The intention is that we will also have on board the private sector, particularly international institutions, who will not do business with anybody without their NIN (National Identification Number) and NIC," Jacqueline Lynch-Stewart, chief technical director of the Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Division in the Office of the Prime Minister shared at a forum staged by Jamaicans for Justice (JFJ) yesterday at the University of the West Indies. Read more here



Mexico earthquake of magnitude 8.2 strikes off Pacific coast

An earthquake described by Mexico's president as the country's strongest in a century has struck off the southern coast, killing at least 15 people. The quake, which President Enrique Peña Nieto said measured 8.2, struck in the Pacific, about 87km (54 miles) south-west of Pijijiapan. A tsunami warning was issued for Mexico, with three-metre-high waves possible, and other nearby countries. Severe damage has been reported in Oaxaca and Chiapas states. The quake, which struck at 23:50 local time on Thursday (04:50 GMT Friday), was felt in Mexico City, with buildings swaying and people running into the street. The tremors there, about 1,000km from the epicentre, were reported to have lasted up to a minute. President Peña Nieto said some 50 million Mexicans would have felt the tremor and that the death toll might rise. Read more here

Irma heads for Bahamas, Cuba, leaving devastation in its wake

Hurricane Irma hurtled through the Caribbean on Friday, leaving catastrophic damage in its wake as it closed in on Florida where it could slam into Miami this weekend. The storm barreled between southeastern Cuba and the Turks and Caicos Islands early Friday morning, and is expected to move westward toward central Cuba and the Bahamas. Irma was downgraded to an "extremely dangerous" category 4 storm on Friday, with winds reaching a sustained maximum of 155 mph, the US National Hurricane Center said. At its peak, winds reached sustained maximums of 180 mph. Read more here



8th September 2017


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