Daily Brief - Tuesday 19th July, 2022

NEWS

Ferries issue masking guidelines

The TT Inter-Island Transportation Company (TTIT) said while mask wearing is no longer mandatory under the public health regulations, it is encouraging all port users, travellers, and other stakeholders to continue wearing facemasks on the Port’s compounds and on-board all ferries. In a release, TTIT stated that its management is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for its customers, employees, and other port users as it maintains its essential service to and from Tobago. Read more here

CARPHA: Remain on high alert for importation of viral, other infections

The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) said yesterday that Member States should continue to remain on high alert for the importation of viral or other infections and monitor in country syndromic surveillance systems for increases in fever and rash illnesses. Executive Director of the agency, Dr Joy St John, said in a statement yesterday, “We know that diseases do not recognise borders, and international travel makes us aware that no borders are secure from the threat of diseases, especially infectious ones. “At this time, Member States are in various stages of easing of restrictions for COVID-19 which severely impacted the region.” Read more here

 

POLITICS

PM: Government may cap fuel subsidy at $1b

The Prime Minister said Cabinet might cap the government's subsidy to the price at the pump paid by drivers to $1 billion, Dr Rowley told Monday's briefing at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann's. He pointed out that the subsidy was still in place, despite claims by detractors. On the subsidy of LPG sold, he dared listeners to phone up relatives in other Caribbean countries to see what they were paying for a tankful of such cooking gas. If the world market price goes up so as to exceed this $1 billion cap, he said, the consumer will have to pay the difference. Read more here

Govt wants to welcome trade union movement back to NTAC

The global increase in the price of oil gave the country an $8 billion windfall. Two million dollars of that was allocated to the budget when the Government presented the mid-year budget review, now the Prime Minister has some other ideas of how the rest can be spent. “I have just said that it is possible for the government to make half of the money we have available from the increased earnings now, to make that available to public servants now but that will have to be with the agreement of their leaders,” Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley said yesterday. He was speaking during a press conference at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s when he made the offer. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

Mini launches electric car amidst high demand

Mini has taken its first step into the electric vehicle space in T&T with the launch of its Mini Electric last Friday. The company’s Country Brand Manager Celestee DaBreo explained that demand for an electric Mini had been high since the Government in the budget last year announced tax exemptions on electric vehicles with an additional surge since May when Finance Minister Colm Imbert announced that the waiver also applied to hybrids. “It’s been amazing, most of our cars have gotten pre-booked, we have gotten calls from the time the exemptions would have been issued where electric and hybrid cars would have given full exemptions. It’s really been fielding calls, trying to get people in to see the models and then pre-booking so before cars have even landed they’ve been sold,” said DaBreo at the media launch of the vehicle at the Mini’s Showroom in Port- of-Spain. Read more here

Business groups welcome new crime efforts

Pertubed and “horrified” by recent brazens murders and other violent crimes, the heads of various business associations are welcoming Government’s plans to address Trinidad and Tobago’s crime crisis. At a media conference yesterday, Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley announced a plan to declare this country’s ”dramatic escalation in violent crime” a public health issue. He said a committee will be established to come up with a plan of action, which would entail educating the youth population at various levels, with the aim of steering them away from crime and criminal activity. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Guyana Shore Base Inc. ‘reaps fruits’ of US$300M investment

The Guyana Shore Base Inc. (GYSBI), a pioneering Guyanese company in the local oil-and-gas sector, has secured an 11-year extension on its contract with Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL), an ExxonMobil affiliate, for the provision of shore-base management and operations services. The contract will run until 2033 and builds on the previous contract, which was awarded to the company in 2017 and will expire in August this year. In these five years, GYSBI has directly invested over US$300 million in enabling port infrastructure, real estate development, warehousing and support services, and recruited, trained and certified more than 1,000 Guyanese for key operational positions within the industry and beyond through its affiliates. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Heatwave: Ferocious European heat heads north

Western Europe faces more sweltering temperatures on Tuesday as a ferocious heatwave heads north. The UK hit its highest ever temperature of 39.1C, according to provisional Met Office figures, with forecasters expecting more than 40C later. Extreme heat warnings were issued in France while northern Spain saw temperatures of 43C (109F) on Monday. Deadly wildfires in France, Portugal, Spain and Greece have forced thousands of people to evacuate their homes. Two people were killed by forest fires in Spain's north-western Zamora region and trains in the area were halted because of fire near the tracks. An elderly couple died while trying to escape fires in northern Portugal. Read more here

19th July 2022

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