TUC to hold forum today on green-economy, NIS

The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) is scheduled to host a one-day forum today to address matters pertaining to the Green Economy, European Union/Cariforum Economic Partnership Agreement and the National Insurance Scheme (NIS).

According to a GTUC press release participants would be drawn from its affiliates and like-minded organizations.

The resource persons, the release said, would be Garfield Barnwell, Director, Sustainable Development, CARICOM Secretariat; Carl Greenidge, former Senior Deputy Director, Office of Trade Negotiations, CARICOM; and Patrick Martinborough, former NIS General Manager.

Barnwell  will address the issue of ‘Global preparedness for Rio 20 Conference’. This conference which is slated for June 4-6, 2012 in Brazil  follows the proposal in 2007 to the United Nations General Assembly by then Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to ensure the continuity of the Kyoto Protocol which expires next year and is premised on a legally binding agreement to ensure the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the effort of  protecting the environment.

And Greenidge  will make a presentation on the ‘Economic Partnership Agreement between the European Union and Cariforum’.

The release noted that the EPA’s principle that properly managed trade can help development by employment creation, improved accessibility  to a wider range of good-quality products, average prices reduction and income generation is of interest to the umbrella trade union body.

And the recent report from the International Monetary Fund  that the NIS will record a deficit in 2012 is a matter of grave concern.  The release noted that the GTUC was one of the major players in pushing for the establishment of the NIS in 1969 as a social safety network  for workers  who would make periodic  financial investments to later provide for their economic security when they cannot work; and at death that security be paid to their dependants.

In an effort to get a deeper understanding of the  Scheme’s condition and to determine the way forward, former NIS General Manager  Martinborough will speak on ‘The state of NIS  and recommendations to move the Scheme forward’, the release concluded.

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