Christmas 2013 one of the worst in 10 years

- Upper Corentyne Chamber President

– wants probe into scrapping  of old Skeldon Factory

President of the Upper Corentyne Chamber of Commerce Krishnanand Jaichand has told Stabroek Business that the Christmas season just past was “one of the worst” for business “that I have been over the past ten years.”

Asked to identify the reasons for what he described as a “slow” Christmas, Jaichand attributed the phenomenon to “money circulation”.

And against the backdrop of what he says is increasing local concern over the future of the ‘new’ GuySuCo Sugar

Upper Corentyne Chamber President Krishnanand Jaichand
Upper Corentyne Chamber President Krishnanand Jaichand

Factory at Skeldon, Jaichand said “someone needs to explain who authorized the dismantling of the old sugar factory.”

He said that one consequence of the dismantling of the old factory was that cane from Skeldon Estate was now being sent to Albion for grinding. “Skeldon Estate is important for the Upper Corentyne. If it fails, there will be vast unemployment throughout the area,” he said.

The senior Berbice Chamber official told Stabroek Business that reports emanating from the business community indicated that growth in the business sector was slow last year, compared with the previous year. “Some of the businesses that had developed in 2012 were not sustained due to the economic depression,” Jaichand added.

Asked to comment on trading between the Upper Corentyne business community and neighbouring Suriname, Jaichand said he continued to be pleased with the relationship. While in a previous interview with this newspaper he had expressed dissatisfaction with the regime that had been in place for the valuation of goods imported from Suriname, he suggested in the current interview that the system had improved. “I was told that revenue in the Upper Corentyne had tripled and that this was because new systems were put in place and because there were new valuation mechanisms for goods imported from Suriname,” he added.

One of the Upper Corentyne’s business houses
One of the Upper Corentyne’s business houses

Meanwhile, following reports on a spate of robberies in the Upper Corentyne targeting businessmen during the latter months of last year, the Chamber had met the Commander and other senior officers of ‘B’ Division to discuss the crime situation and to secure a policing perspective on an appropriate response. “Some of the issues affecting the business sector were highlighted and we brought to their attention the importance of security if the Upper Corentyne wanted to attract investors,” Jaichand said.

While he gave no details of the outcome of the engagement with ‘B’ Division’s top brass he described the meeting as “a successful one.”

Meanwhile, Jaichand told Stabroek Business that the Chamber was lending attention to the implementation of its 2014 strategic plan formulated with the support of “a volunteer from Canada” in collaboration with the Canadian Executive Service Organisation (CESO) and the Institute for Private Enterprise Development (IPED). “Our top priorities are the setting up of a permanent secretariat to house the Chamber so that we can improve communication amongst the members, deliver a more efficient service and make the community more aware of the Chamber’s undertakings,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Upper Corentyne Chamber has initiated a job agency designed to help unemployed residents of the community find jobs in the business sector.

And Jaichand told Stabroek Business that it was the business support organization’s wish that the government and the political opposition find ways of arriving at a compromise that would allow for the realization of anti-money laundering legislation since Guyana was already experiencing the effects of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force blacklisting.

Latest in Business

At the Princess Hotel Casino

Draft gaming legislation before year end

Legislation designed to update existing local laws to ensure that they keep pace with the evolution of gaming is currently being drafted and could be completed before the end of this year, Chairman of the new Gaming Authority of Guyana Roysdale Forde has told the Stabroek Business.

20160701business cover

Georgetown Chamber expects gov’t to avail 20% of contracts for SMEs as provisioned in act

The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) has signalled its intention to throw its weight behind the provision in the 2004 Small Business Act that binds government to ensuring that the small business sector secures a minimum of 20 per cent of procurement contracts issued by the state.

default placeholder

Are you really an entrepreneur?

Entrepreneur, Managing Director, GeoTechVision Entrepreneurship seems to be the new buzz word these days and while many are trying to build and contribute to creating an entrepreneurial ecosystem, few entrepreneurs have excelled by turning their ideas into high growth businesses.

default placeholder

Contractors seeking meetings with ministers, mayor to discuss workplace safety issues

Stabroek Business has been sent a copy of a memorandum from the 70-member General Contrac-tors Association of Guyana (GCAG) seeking what its Secretary Neil Cort-Rogers says are “important meetings” with two cabinet ministers and the Mayor of Georgetown to find solutions to “critical issues” facing the sector.

Prime Minister Keith Rowley attended by assorted dignitaries doing sod-turning duties at the site of the planned car park.

Port of Spain getting parking meters too

One thing that Georgetown appears to have in common with Port of Spain is a premium on parking space and yesterday the Trinidad Express reported that on the previous day the twin-island Republic’s Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley had turned the sod to commence the construction of a TT$100 million multi-storey car park in the capital.

Mercy Wings is training part of the country’s future work force

Mercy Wings needs public, private sector help to provide Sophia youths with life-changing skills

Sophia is one of those working-class communities where unemployment is high, poverty is ever present and the rate of school dropouts is disturbing.

Kitco is a Canadian company that buys and sells precious metals such as gold, copper and silver. It runs a website Kitco.com for gold news, commentary and market information.

Kitco Market

Gold Prices for the three day period ending Thursday  June 30, 2016

Kwakwani faces an acute crisis of bad roads

Berbice River communities facing economic challenges, community differences

Kwakwani is a struggling, underdeveloped community, a poignant example of the fact that the pace of development has not been anywhere near even across the various regions of Guyana.

Comments

About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Stay updated! Follow Stabroek News on Facebook or Twitter.

Get the day's headlines from SN in your inbox every morning: