Business Express

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Top Story

When it all adds up

One year before Richard Young retired as managing director of Scotiabank Trinidad and Tobago (SBTT) corporate eyes were focussed on Jamaican Anya Schnoor. She was sent to the bank’s Toronto, Canada head office where she underwent 12 rigorous months of training in an executive orientation programme. When the position of Country Head of Scotiabank Trinidad and Tobago was offered to her, she accepted. Read more »

  • Whither our national pride?

    The International Court of Arbitration had no choice but to order, as it did last November, that CLICO’s majority shares in Methanol Holdings Trinidad Ltd (MHTL) be offered for sale to minority shareholder Consolidated Energy Ltd (CEL). That was based on a shareholders’ agreement that was signed when MHTL was incorporated. Read More »

  • How energy companies respond to concessions

    The Minister of Finance and the Economy Larry Howai was widely expected, prompted by his colleague, Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs, Kevin Christian Ramnarine, to complete the array of tax incentives required to stimulate activity in the energy sector by offering fiscal reliefs for the development of small gas pools offshore Trinidad and Tobago in his 2014-2015 national budget. Read More »

  • Million dollar question

    I am really glad that the dependants of police officers killed on duty will receive a million dollars as compensation. But as I drove along Richmond Street heading into downtown Port of Spain on a morning of wall-to-wall, back-to-back, car-to-truck traffic, with police sirens renting the air into shards of hubbub and hullaballoo, I wondered who would pay my family were I to succumb to the fatal crash that seemingly awaits every motorist in Trinidad. Read More »

  • When going green brings benefits

    Guidance for accountants advising SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises) about establishing and operating carbon accounting, and the associated tax advantages, was recently published by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Read More »

  • ‘Don’t judge us only on IPO scandal’

    A division of the State-owned banking group First Citizens will be “the lead broker” in the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of the 39 per cent shareholding of Phoenix Park Gas Processors held by another State-owned company, the National Gas Corporation (NGC). Read More »

  • Worries over regional aviation

    The outgoing chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO), Beverly Nicholson-Doty, says while some progress is being made, much more needs to be achieved to resolve long-standing concerns of the regional aviation sector. Read More »

  • Re-Route truth

    The leader of the Highway Re-Route Movement, Dr Wayne Kublalsingh, has started another hunger-strike in protest at the actions of the State in relation to the hotly-contested Debe-Mon Desir link of the Point Fortin Highway. Some of the issues now emerging offer disturbing echoes from Kublalsingh’s first hunger-strike in November 2012, but it seems to me that these are the very reasons we need to think again so as to find a different way to speak about our country’s large-scale development. Read More »

  • Infrastructure Investments: Way for economic growth

    The adage “numbers never lie” is true when examining the correlation between a country’s investment in transportation infrastructure and its economic prosperity. Consider these statistics from the World Economic Forum’s annual Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), which assesses a series of factors that impact the economic performance of 144 countries in relationship to one other. Read More »

  • Tobago – Post Budget 2014

    The myriad reactions to the initiatives of the 2014-2015 Budget reading by the Minister of Finance, the Honourable Senator Larry Howai on September 8 2014, were reflected in the Chamber’s 2014 Post-Budget Forum held by the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce on September 9. Read More »

  • Energy Chamber of T&T Budget Analysis 2014/15

    The energy sector continues to drive the Trinidad and Tobago economy, the Energy Chamber says in its Review of Finance Minister Larry Howai’s 2014/2015 national Budget. In Part 1 last Wednesday the Chamber expressed “cautious optimism” about growth this year. Read More »

  • ISIS’ Ultimate Goal: Saudi Arabia’s Oil Wells

    For the terrorist group known as the Islamic State, Syria and Iraq were a good place to start their campaign, but in order to survive and prosper it knew from the outset that it had no choice but to set its sights on the ultimate prize: the oil fields of Saudi Arabia. It is in that direction that the battle for control of the world’s largest oilfields is currently heading. Read More »

  • Banking on the Avenue

    Trinidad and Tobago’s newest bank has set up shop on Ariapita Avenue in Port of Spain. NCB Global Finance Ltd last week launched and formally unveiled its new name. The launch was held at the company’s offices at 68 Ariapita Avenue, Woodbrook, Port of Spain, and saw the Minister of Finance Larry Howai among specially invited guests in attendance. Read More »

  • From Shanghai to Trinidad

    Ask the average Trinidadian about the Shanghai Construction Group (SCG), and you will likely get an earful about it being former prime minister Patrick Manning’s hand-picked contractor, an invasion of Chinese labourers, something about those funny looking multi-million dollar buildings, and of course, that National Academy for the Performing Arts (NAPA) in Port of Spain and its problems. Read More »

  • T&T ranking in top 30 but gas rates too high

    By itself, the Ryder Scott annual audit of this country’s natural gas reserves is no reason for panic by government or among industrialists and the population. The company’s report showed that proven natural gas reserves declined from 13.1 trillion cubic feet (tcf) in 2012 to 12.2 tcf in 2013. Probable reserves fell from 6.1 tcf to 5.5 tcf, and possible improved from 5.9 tcf to 6.1 tcf. Read More »

  • Nine-year comfort zone

    According to the Ryder Scott company, Trinidad and Tobago’s proven natural gas reserves were at their lowest level in 11 years last year – 12.2 trillion cubic feet (tcf). On the face of it, that seems a development worth worrying about. Read More »

  • Unemployment up 3.7% in 2013

    Young people between the ages of 15-29 account for more than 40 per cent of all unemployed persons in Trinidad and Tobago. The rate of unemployment in Trinidad and Tobago edged up to 3.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2013, from the previous historical low of 3.5 per cent in the third quarter, the Budget document “Review of the Economy 2014” states. Read More »

  • The new plantocracy

    “Green” offices with plants make staff happier and more productive than “lean” designs stripped of greenery. This claim was made in an article a friend sent me. It said that if you have an office bare like Mother Hubbard’s cupboard and you put some plants in it you can improve productivity by 15 per cent. Research showed plants in the office significantly increased workplace satisfaction, levels of concentration, and air quality. Read More »

  • Day-to-day budget not enough

    The Trinidad & Tobago Coalition of Services Industries (TTCSI) believes that the measures outlined in the 2015 fiscal Budget presentation should have been geared towards transformation of the economy, rather than facilitating the country’s day-to-day operations in a piece-meal fashion. Read More »

  • Where T&T’s LNG ends up

    Production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) declined by 4.6 per cent during the October 2013 to March 2014 period, to 362.5 trillion British Thermal Units (BTU), from 379.8 trillion BTU one year earlier, a Budget 2014/2015 documents shows. Read More »

  • Champions of business

    For the past ten years, the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce has been hosting its prestigious Annual Business Hall of Fame with a gala ceremony to recognise and celebrate the contribution of Business to the national community. In the past decade, 23 outstanding individuals have been inducted into our Hall of Fame, which remains the only one of its kind in Trinidad and Tobago. Read More »

  • Energy Chamber wades in

    The Energy Chamber believes that cautious optimism should still be the watchwords for the country’s energy sector future following Finance Minister Larry Howai’s presentation of Budget 2014/2015 last Monday in Parliament. Read More »

  • American dollar strongest in a year

    In the world of currencies, the United States dollar is starting to look like a safe home in a tough neighbourhood. A strengthening American economy, combined with a gloomy outlook for growth elsewhere, is pushing the US currency sharply higher. The dollar is up 6.4 per cent against a group of major currencies since the start of May and has risen in three of the past four months. Read More »

  • A worldwide panic

    The tourism industry has been experiencing a series of epidemic outbreaks for over two decades, including SARS, Bird Flu, Foot and Mouth disease, Dengue and Ebola. Therefore, crises of this nature, are not uncommon to the tourism industry. Read More »

  • Barbie back at Hilton

    Hilton Buenos Aires and Mattel have teamed up again to re-introduce the Barbie Room to the newest generation of Barbie admirers. In line with Mattel’s effort to encourage and inspire young girls that “with Barbie, anything is possible”, the Barbie Room returns to the Puerto Madero hotel ten years after the debut of the first ever hotel Barbie Room at Hilton Buenos Aires in 2004. Read More »

  • How to approach saving 33 per cent

    In Part 1 of this article, “What are Savings?”, we discussed a few principles around saving, including considering why it is important, what it is and is not, as well as how to arrange your savings in different buckets. Read More »

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