This column has already commented on the virtues of the initiative spearheaded by former Jamaican prime minister and Caricom elder statesman Percival J Patterson to put together a US$1billion fund to help regional service providers participate in the physical recon-struction of earthquake-ravaged Haiti.
The Monday, February 21 issue of the Barbados Business Authority, one of the more informative business newspapers in the region, contains an article titled “Attractive Environment For Investment” authored by Michael Austin, the Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados-based offices of Illuminat, a Neal and Massy subsidiary with interests elsewhere in the region that provides information technology and communications products, services and solutions that help to manage, develop and troubleshoot businesses.
In a recent interview with this newspaper, President of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) Clinton Williams expressed the view that some of the sub-sectors in the local private sector were not being sufficiently aggressive in seeking markets for their goods and services beyond the shores of Guyana.
We do not know enough to pronounce with any authority on the claims made earlier this week by laid off workers at the NPIC Call Centre regarding their conditions of work, though some of those claims bear a striking resemblance to complaints made by employees of call centres in other parts of the world.
Since the formal opening of the Takutu Bridge in September 2009 by President Bharrat Jagdeo and then Brazilian President Luis Ignacio Lula Da Silva, there has been a significant intensification of public discourse regarding the prospects of stronger trade and economic ties between Guyana and Brazil.
The recent upheaval arising out of the displacement of several vendors from outside the Stabroek Market following the grenade explosion early last month raises once again the issue of how to treat seriously with urban street vending.
A businessman with whom this newspaper talked earlier this week spoke eloquently for the numerous ‘bottom-house’ manufacturers who have survived and even grown over the years without succeeding in realizing the level of expansion that would set them on a path to real entrepreneurship.
The Private Sector Commission (PSC), in what it described as its “initial scoping of the budget impact” issued a press release on Tuesday headlined ‘PSC congratulates Minister of Finance, Government of Guyana on tax reforms’.
The chaos that has, for years, passed for vending in the vicinity of the Stabroek Market could not have been allowed to go on forever; pity indeed that it took an incident involving loss of life and multiple injuries to get the authorities to do something to address the problem.
It comes as no surprise that Guyana’s gold industry outdid itself once again this year, topping 300,000 ounces for the second consecutive year and earning the country upward of US$346 million, reportedly, the best performance by the sector since the closure of Omai Gold Mines Ltd five years ago.
Cross border smuggling is nothing new to Guyana and given our open and ill-protected entry points, restricting the practice requires a level of resources which the Government of Guyana has never quite been able to afford and will probably not be able to afford for a long time.
It would be by no means an exaggeration to state that this week’s hasty backing away by the sugar corporation from its threat to de-recognize the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) was a demeaning and undignified experience for the leadership of the company.
There used to be a time not so many years ago when much of what was consumed at Christmas was imported into the country from overseas.
Up until now the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has seemingly not learnt many of the lessons of their continually spiralling food import bill and what appears to be the certainty of further increases in the prices of heavily consumed imported foods.
It is by no means an overstatement to say that the refusal by the Ministry of Health to secure drugs for state institutions through public tender rather than persist with its sole-sourcing method that basically puts public funds into the pocket of the Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation (GPC) without the company having to do much more than simply go out an acquire the drugs is highly improper.
Agriculture Minister Robert Persaud has said that Guyana’s ambition of creating a strong agro-business sector is unlikely to be realized in circumstances where high electricity costs account for the lion’s share of overall operating costs.
Part of the reason for local investor indifference to the agriculture sector has to do with the absence of risk management mechanisms in the sector.
The recently released Auditor General’s Report for 2009 reads – as it customarily does like a corruption catalogue.
The decline of the state-run bauxite sector in Linden set in train what a former LINMINE employee aptly described as “a continuous calamity of woes” for the community to which there seems to be no end.
As best as this newspaper can recall, no businessman, at least in recent memory, has chosen to talk back to government on any issue in quite the manner that Robert Badal has recently.
A few weeks ago we published an editorial that sought to draw attention to the fact that criminals appeared to be focusing more pointed attention on the mining areas in the interior of Guyana.
Minister Robert Persaud’s recent remarks about the nexus between agricultural production and securing markets, particularly overseas markets for the food we produce, has, for more reasons than one, struck a responsive chord with this newspaper.
If, as has recently been reported in the media, the Ministry of Education is involved in the copying and distributing to state schools of textbooks published by overseas publishers without the knowledge and, by extension the consent of the Minister of Education, that in itself would be an unflattering comment on the manner in which the ministry is administered.
Unquestionably, GuyExpo usually generates a considerable measure of public interest. Most of the major local private sector enterprises display their goods and services, there is some measure of participation by regional and international exhibitors and buyers in the event, it is usually opened with much fanfare by the President and crowds, large crowds of people make the journey to Sophia every day – mostly in the evenings – to witness and be part of the spectacle.
Little if any public attention has been paid to the significance of the new US$60m submarine telecommunications cable for relations between the two South American Republics that share the cable and what this might mean for the bettering of a bilateral relationship which, over the years, has been blighted by a bitter controversy over borders.
The Business Editorial Last Sunday, the Kaieteur News reported on the seemingly unstoppable trade in illegal reproduction and sale of text books and the impact of the practice on the viability of legitimate bookselling operations.