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INFLATION CONTINUES TO TREND DOWNWARD

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KINGSTON, May 26 (JIS):

Jamaica’s inflation rate continues to trend downward, reaching a 50-year low of three per cent at the end of the March 2016 quarter.

Bank of Jamaica (BoJ) Governor, Brian Wynter, says the figure is the lowest since financial year 1966/67.

“It is lower than the 3.7 per cent that was recorded in December 2015 and it is lower than the four per cent that was recorded in March 2015. It was also well below the bank’s target range of 5.5 per cent to 7.5 per cent that had been set for 2015/16 fiscal year,” he said.

Mr. Wynter was addressing the BoJ’s quarterly press briefing on May 26 at the bank’s headquarters, downtown Kingston.

He said a 1.3 per cent fall in consumer prices during the March quarter contributed to low inflation out-turn.

“This fall in prices was mainly influenced by declines in energy and transport-related costs and domestic agricultural food prices. The fall occurred despite exchange rate depreciation of 1.4 per cent for the quarter,” the BoJ Governor noted.

He informed that the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) is reporting that inflation continued to decline in April, falling to -0.4 per cent, and pushing the annual inflation rate down to 2.4 per cent.

Mr. Wynter also attributed the low level of inflation to the BoJ’s monetary policy “supported by the strong fiscal policy stance of the Government.”

“This fiscal anchor has proven to be a powerful force for macroeconomic stability. In line with this, inflationary expectations continue to be firmly anchored in single digits,” he said.

 

He noted that the bank’s latest inflation expectations survey, conducted in February 2016, indicated a slight fall in expected inflation, 12 months ahead, to 4.3 per cent from the 4.4 per cent that was recorded in the December 2015 survey.

 

Caribbean News

Ali delivers powerful speech at Essequibo amidst Venezuela conflict

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer 

 

#Guyana, December 10, 2023 – “We shall never be defeated, we will be successful, no enemy, no one, no one can take away this success from us.” These are the words of Irfaan Ali, the president of Guyana as he visited the Venezuela threatened Essequibo on December 6th.

The president visited Essequibo and delivered a powerful and empowering speech to the residents as their home is threatened by the claim over the land by Venezuela.

Ali, reassured the people of Essequibo that the region belongs to them and Guyana, and no one else.

“Essequibo belongs to Guyana, Essequibo belongs to every single Guyanese,” he stated.

“No one shall [rise] over us,” he also said.

Ali starts his address as a light shower of rain fell saying, “Good morning Essequibo, good morning Guyana, there is a gentle drizzle, as we say here in Guyana, and this gentle drizzle is a reminder that we are all together under the one banner of humanity, and we are all together in this country under the one banner of Guayna, [whether we are from Essequibo, Berbise or Demerara, we are together under that one powerful concept and that concept is that we are Guyanese.”

Ali continued to initiate a call and response, solidifying the identity of his people.

“Let me hear you say that, we are Guyanese,” he maintained, as the people repeated.

President Ali expressed to the people that Guyana is responding to the issue with Venezuela by leading by example and in “love.”

He added that Guyana is responding by banding together, “connecting hands” in peace and love which he says shows the world that Guyana believes in human connection, human interconnection, human dignity and a human barrier, which peace and love are primary and important.

Ali continued to point out that their efforts, convening in Essequibo and across the country, goes beyond a physical connection.

“It is a psychological connection,” he says, adding that it serves as a reminder that Guyana is one consistent link and that the country is strongest when the people work together, and can’t be penetrated easily.

This togetherness Ali speaks of is one he says can stand against any challenge, alluding to Venezuela’s clearly expressed determination to claim Essequibo.

He says that countries and regions around the world support Guyana against the fact that Essequibo belongs to Guyanese people and not Venezuelans.

Ali chanted that Guyana is not on sinking sand but on a solid foundation, hinting at their resilience and willingness to fight for Essequibo.

“We stand on a strong foundation of truth, honour and dignity, and that truth, honour and dignity is that Essequibo is Guyana, Essequibo belongs to Guyana,” he again emphasized.

Guyana’s borders are secure and will remain so, Ali said, as he saluted those who are willing to make sure that Essequibo stays out of the hands of Venezuela by strengthening its borders, buoying up the spirits of the Guyanese people.

He called on the Venezuelan government to act on the interest of its people, the future of Venezuela as well as in the interest of “dignity” and respect the order of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

He further stated that Venezuela has a responsibility to every country on the globe and within the Caribbean region, later adding that Guyana and Venezuela will have to live together as neighbors as he neared the end of his address.

“No one shall [rise] over us,” he said.

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Bahamas News

Potter’s Cay vendors to get help from Bahamas Gov’t after November fire

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#TheBahamas, December 10, 2023 – Victims of the Potter’s Cay fire in November, will soon be assisted by the government of The Bahamas through a credit line organized with a reputable  Bahamian company.

This is being done through the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources on a mission to rebuild the stalls lost in the fire on November 19th, 2023.

According to the ministry, they will assist with a sum of $64,823.62 which is $16,205.88 per stall, to aid business with quickly bounding back, especially given that the holiday season is near, expressed Jomo Campbell, Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources.

Campbell spoke to the unfortunate incident saying,

“It was reported that a boat caught fire and drifted to the western side of the dock. As such, four stalls were completely destroyed. We thank God that there wasn’t any injury or loss of life. However, we know that the fire caused damage to the livelihoods of Bahamians and even our fishing industry, which plays a vital role to our food supply.”

Considering this and the ministry’s mission, the credit will be established with [Premiere Importers] Campbell said.

This investment also comes as Potter’s Cay dock, as Campbell pointed put, is a crucial aspect of Bahamian culture.

“It has a vital role to play in our economy,” he said.

For disasters such as this, the minister continues to highlight that the ministry is doing the work to implement preventative measures by fortifying safety protocols, carrying out regular inspections and providing training and resources to businesses in the fishing industry to better equip them to handle emergency situations.

Campbell, in responding to questions as he made the announcement in a video on the ministry’s Facebook, said that insurance for the stalls is an issue that will also be addressed going forward in the new year.

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Caribbean News

World at a Tipping Point, Mottley of Barbados doubles down on her Climate Crisis message

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer 

December 10, 2023 – There is an urgent need for a global methane agreement to drive the fight against worsening the climate crisis. Otherwise temperatures will continue to increase and more lives will be lost.

Mia Amor Mottley, the Prime Minister of Barbados, known for her firm advocacy and award winning dedication to vocalising the path toward creating a safer planet, made the remark at this year’s Cop28 conference in the UAE.

With 180 seconds to speak, Mottley made powerful points regarding the needs for winning against climate change effects.

She expressed that without change in the approach to the climate crisis, the results will be catastrophic.

Regarding the global methane agreements, which she says the world needs, to help drive “concrete action,” to control methane, as the damage I can cause in the near future, exceeds that of Carbon Dioxide (CO2).

For progress to be made with methane control, she says oil and gas companies need to agree to fix leaks in their pipelines  as well as stop flaring.

Mottley highlights this against the fact that “oil and gas operations are the largest sources of methane methane emissions from the energy sector,” according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

In continuation, Mottley continues to speak about other factors in relation to methane, that need reform to cater to a safe and more resilient earth in light of climate change.

The prime minister refers to farming and waste management practices which she maintained must change in order to control the level of methane that the world is seeing.

Emphasizing her argument she said, “ the science is simple, to turn down the heat, you simply have to turn down the methane, and until we accept that, we will go over a tipping point.”

Tying the issue of capital into her argument, Mottley, expressed that she has exhausted the point that long term capital is needed to stop the world leaders from choosing between people and planet. Regarding this, the attitude towards access to capital must change, she also said.

Calling attention to the Bridgetown Initiative and the Paris Plan for action, she said they all outline that the issues of methane and capital are “tipping points” that the world needs to pass.

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