Daily Brief - Tuesday 4th June, 2019

NEWS

Green Fund underutilised

The Green Fund is vastly underutilised. This is the contention of Senior Technical Officer, Caribbean Natural Resources Institute (CANARI), Anna Cadiz-Hadeed, who was one of the presenters at the recent Tobago Environmental Partnership Conference. Cadiz-Hadeed’s presentation assessed the contributions of civil society organisations in fulfilling the objectives of the Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) to which TT is a signatory. Cadiz-Hadeed, who is also a consultant with the Ministry of Planning and Development, revealed there is over $6 billion in the Green Fund, according to the latest Auditor General’s report in September 2018. She said of that sum, over $373 million has, to date, been allocated to 23 projects. Read more here

Wedding food for socially displaced

“We did not re­al­ly want to make it a pub­lic event that we did for likes or what­ev­er the case may be. We did it from the bot­tom of our hearts be­cause it is some­thing we do on a reg­u­lar ba­sis,” said Crys­tal Pal­too. This is not a sto­ry that Pal­too and her new hus­band Michael Chong-Ki­aw want­ed to tell, but it is a sto­ry that has tak­en on a life of its own. Just af­ter mid­night on Sun­day, pho­tographs of Pal­too, still in her wed­ding dress, and Chong-Ki­aw, with his shirt sleeves rolled up, were post­ed on Face­book show­ing the new­ly-wed cou­ple feed­ing the so­cial­ly dis­placed with food from their wed­ding. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Imbert congratulates Trinidad Petroleum

Finance Minister Colm Imbert yesterday congratulated Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Ltd (TPHL) for securing conditional commitments to refinance Petrotrin’s US$850 million bond issue. In a tweet, Imbert said the repayment of the bond issue is due in August. “This Petrotrin debt was not guaranteed by the Government.” Imbert also said the refinancing “is also not guaranteed by Government.” Read more here

492 positions available in UNC constituency polls

A to­tal of 492 po­si­tions will be up for grabs in the Unit­ed Na­tion­al Con­gress’ (UNC) con­stituen­cy ex­ec­u­tive elec­tions due this month. Con­fir­ma­tion came from the par­ty’s deputy po­lit­i­cal leader David Lee, two days af­ter the UNC an­nounced on its web­site that the par­ty will hold its con­stituen­cy ex­ec­u­tive elec­tions, as well as its woman’s arm and youth arm elec­tions, as it pre­pares for the up­com­ing lo­cal gov­ern­ment and gen­er­al elec­tions. The con­stituen­cy ex­ec­u­tive elec­tions will be held on two days — June 23 and 30. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

BP payments to Govt more than doubled last year

Though still far below 2013 levels, the country’s largest natural gas producer more than doubled its contribution to the Government coffers last year to US$360.5 million from US$148.7 million the year before, London-listed BP plc’s Payment to Governments declaration showed last week. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

New Visa Hurdle - Social-Media Posts May Doom US Travel Chances, Says Lawyer

A new mandatory requirement for Jamaicans and other citizens across the globe to disclose all the social-media platforms they have visited in the last five years, along with their user names, when they apply for American visas will have a “chilling effect” on free speech, a Jamaica-born immigration attorney based in the United States (US) has said. The assertion by Dahlia Walker Huntington came yesterday after the American Embassy in Kingston confirmed that the application forms for immigrant and non-immigrant visas have been updated by the State Department in Washington to request additional information from most applicants, including what it describes as “social-media identifiers” on popular portals such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Trump's UK state visit: US media's verdict on first day

The pomp and pageantry of the first day of Donald Trump's state visit to the UK stole the headlines in US media, but as many outlets highlighted, it wasn't quite enough to hide the tension around the president's arrival. Read more here

Angela Merkel's best laid plans are falling apart in Germany

Angela Merkel may have been hoping for a smooth exit to her long tenure as German Chancellor. Instead, she could be in for a rough ride, after suffering two major political blows in the past week. First, her chosen successor as Germany's leader, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer -- better known as AKK -- has plunged in the polls after a series of blunders. Second, Merkel's coalition partner, Andrea Nahles of the Social Democrats, resigned after taking a battering in last week's European elections. Read more here

4th June 2019

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