Daily Brief - Tuesday 3rd October, 2017


AmCham, TTMA concerned

The American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) and the TT Manufacturing Association (TTMA) have both expressed concern about government’s strong focus on taxation and lack of clarity in explaining how it intends to implement many of the policies announced in this year’s Budget statement. “Overtaxing the formal economy is going to have a dampening effect on reinvestment,” AmCham said in a statement yesterday, adding that the presentation fell short on explaining how the government planned collect taxes in the more informal and underground economies. “Simply increasing taxes while admitting that tax collection in the sector is weak, is unlikely to work,” AmCham said. Most worrying, AmCham added, was the possible negative impact new taxes would have on the upstream energy sector. Read more here



Neville, a Pioneer of Carnival

Mourners braved the inclement weather yesterday to attend the funeral of 94-year-old masman Neville Romus Aming at the Church of the Assumption in Maraval. “Daddy was a pioneer of Carnival,” said Aming’s daughter Crystal Aming-Marcus who delivered the eulogy. She fondly recalled memories of him. “His influence lives on in me, as I have been a costume designer for the past 18 years,” said Aming-Marcus. Read more here

Mother of slain teen: He remains my hero 

Yucklan Sancaro believes the actions of her son the night he died were with the best intentions. And he remains a hero in her eyes. Sancaro yesterday responded to the claims made by the woman at the centre of events in July that led to the death of her son, 17-year-old David Sancaro. Read more here



Chamber welcomes $2.2B for Tobago

Chairman of the Tobago Division of the TT Chamber of Industry and Commerce Demi John Cruickshank is calling for a meeting with the Tobago House of Assembly (THA). Cruickshank, commenting in Scarborough after the national budget presentation in Port of Spain, said the chamber felt comforted by the estimated $2.2 billion allocation to Tobago. And so, he made a call for a meeting with the THA aimed at moving Tobago forward. Read more here

Analysts give package thumbs up

Political analysts are giving the 2017-2018 fiscal package a thumbs up saying the Government appeared to have listened to the concerns of the population has spread the burden of adjustment across the board. Dr Winford James said at first glance “it was a comprehensive budget that gives the impression that the Government left no stone unturned. It demonstrated that the Government was aware of the problems and offered some of the more important solutions. The thing is to see where it goes in terms of implementation.” Read more here

Kamla: A bankrupt budget

It's a “bankrupt budget” that will cause everything single thing in this country to go up as the people suffer, says Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar. “I'm sorry if I sound a bit angry but I'm really very disappointed because I can see great suffering for the ordinary people of this country.... It is bankrupt of any ideas, it is bankrupt of any plan to take the country out of the recession that we are in, and it is one that is literally bankrupting the country so in every regard its a bankrupt budget,” said Persad-Bissessar. She was speaking to the media following Finance Minister Colm Imbert's 2017/18 budget presentation at the Parliament yesterday. Read more here



Repo rate holds

The Central Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has chosen to maintain the repo rate at 4.75 percent, given “the very narrow TT-US differential and the prospect of US rate rises at the end of the year.” Announcing the decision coming out of the MPC’s September meeting, the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (CBTT) yesterday said the MPC also “observed that the nascent signs of recovery in the energy sector had not yet translated into a boost to other sectors.” Read more here

T&T Chamber happy with proposals

The Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce has agreed with Finance Minister Colm Imbert’s announcement that it can no longer be business as usual and there was an urgent need for fundamental transformation at this critical time. In its immediate budget response, the Chamber said Imbert had made some laudable first steps towards incentivizing the desired outcomes in areas such as small business development, startups, agriculture and housing. Read more here

Imbert upbeat on oil, gas output

Trinidad and Tobago will increase its oil and gas output as well as increase its share of the income generated from the fuels. According to Finance Minister Colm Imbert, Trinidad and Tobago's energy sector faces a very positive outlook based on a number of new gas projects which are scheduled to start production over the next two to three years. In addition, a new tax regime, which is designed to provide incentives for increased exploration and production, should also set the stage for increased oil and gas output. Read more here



Dominica, Antigua receive help from Japan

Hurricane-ravaged Dominica has received emergency relief supplies from Japan following the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria. Dominica received emergency supplies through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) which included 250 tents, 102 sleeping pads, 10 plastic sheets, 150 blankets, and 100 foldable water tanks. Read more here



Las Vegas shooting: Police search for gunman's motive

Police are working to establish the motive behind a mass shooting which left at least 59 dead and another 527 injured at a Las Vegas concert. Gunman Stephen Paddock, 64, opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel towards an open-air music festival on Sunday evening. Police found 23 guns in his hotel room, as well as "in excess of" 19 firearms and explosives at his Nevada home. But as yet, no clear reason for the killing has emerged. Read more here

Tragedies to test Trump as nation's comforter

President Donald Trump begins two days of consolation on Tuesday, traveling to storm-battered Puerto Rico before making his way to Las Vegas to view a different type of wreckage at the site of the deadliest shooting in modern US history. It's the most concentrated stretch of presidential comforting to occur during Trump's tenure, which has been marked more by stoking of divisions than displays of empathy. Nevertheless, Trump on Monday hewed to presidential precedent, striking a unifying sentiment during a solemn address at the White House. Read more here


3rd October 2017


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