Connect with us

Caribbean News

Criticism growing for EU Blacklist

Published

on

By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

October 28, 2022 – International organizations are joining Phillip Davis, Bahamian Prime Minister and E Jay Saunders, TCI Deputy Premier in highlighting the disparity between European countries and smaller nations in regard to tax blacklists.

In September at the UN General Assembly Davis said, “When we look at the countries that are flagged as high risk and blacklisted several startling commonalities emerge. Why are all the countries targeted small and vulnerable?”

A month later both The Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos were listed on the EUs blacklist of non-compliant tax jurisdictions along with several others.”

In the aftermath of the Turks and Caicos, addition to the list in early October Oxfam International, a British-founded confederation of 21 independent charitable organizations focusing on the alleviation of global poverty, said this: “The current list makes the EU a hypocrite as major tax havens in Europe like Malta and Luxembourg escape the list while countries outside Europe like Eswatini and Botswana risk being blacklisted.”

An opinion piece published in the Guardian pointed out the disparity

“In the global fight against corruption, Caribbean nations like Trinidad and Tobago are blacklisted in a move that is gravely discriminatory— Pierre Moscovici, economic affairs commissioner, said ‘No one must get a free pass.’  Not one European country was listed; they all got a free pass.”

The Corporate Tax Haven Index which ranks jurisdictions ‘most complicit in helping multinational corporations avoid or underpay corporate income tax” lists 70 jurisdictions on its 2021 list. The European Union has a link to the list listed on their website and the Joint Research Centre at the European Commission has audited the list to judge its accuracy.  It said

“In general, the CTHI is found to be robust”’ Despite the seal of approval not one of the single most prolific tax haven jurisdictions on the CTHI is listed in the EU’s tax blacklist.  In fact two of the so-called most prolific are EU countries. The list includes

  1. The British Virgin Islands
  2. The Cayman Islands
  3. Bermuda
  4. The Netherlands
  5. Switzerland
  6. Luxembourg
  7. Hong Kong
  8. Jersey
  9. Singapore
  10. The United Arab Emirates

On the complete list of 70 jurisdictions described as ‘most complicit’ 28 EU countries were listed, that is to say, all of them.

In 2020, CARICOM asked the EU to desist from what it describes as “the ongoing unilateral, arbitrary and non-transparent blacklisting strategy employed by the European Union (EU) against CARICOM Member States.”

CARICOM maintained that the practice causes significant reputational risk and discourages investment.

Still the practice has continued.

Caribbean News

CHTA Praises Grenada’s Hospitality Industry for Record Growth and Sector-Wide Collaboration

Published

on

GEORGE’S, Grenada (April 9, 2024) – The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) praised tourism stakeholders in Grenada for their dedication to fostering collaboration between the public and private sectors, a partnership that has resulted in sustainable growth within the destination’s tourism industry.

During her inaugural visit to The Spice Island last month, Vanessa Ledesma, Acting CEO of CHTA, spoke at a Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association (GHTA) Members Meeting. The event was attended by government officials and members of the business community, highlighting the strong collaborative efforts that have been instrumental in driving the sector’s progress.

“Grenada is an outstanding Caribbean tourism destination, and I am inspired by the passion and dedication of its hospitality industry stakeholders. Through collaboration and a strong public-private partnership, I am confident that the GHTA and its members will continue to thrive,” said Ledesma. 

Sharing insights from CHTA’s data partner ForwardKeys, Ledesma provided valuable information on Grenada’s tourism outlook. She highlighted first-quarter arrivals that are on track to surpass 2023’s figures, positioning Grenada as a leader in regional tourism growth. 

In 2023, Grenada achieved a milestone by welcoming 178,020 stayover visitors, marking a 33.7% increase from 2022. This impressive growth placed Grenada among a select group of regional destinations that surpassed their 2019 arrival figures, delivering an increase of close to 10 percent.

Data from STR and CoStar highlighted a positive trend in the hospitality sector, with hotel occupancy climbing from 61% to 65.6% year-over-year. Additionally, there was an increase in both Average Daily Rate (ADR) and Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR).

Ledesma also pointed to the Caribbean’s strong performance in the global travel recovery of 2023, noting a three percent increase in international arrivals compared to 2019. This contrasted with a 25% decline in total international inbound travel elsewhere in the world. “The Caribbean has truly set a benchmark in the global tourism landscape, underscoring its significant outperformance in attracting visitors last year,” Ledesma remarked, emphasizing the region’s successful rebound and resilience in the face of global challenges.

The association executive highlighted the comprehensive benefits of CHTA membership, including the critical advocacy work on travel and tourism issues to ensure that members’ voices are heard in policy-making circles. She also underscored the importance of marketing opportunities provided through access to Caribbean Travel Marketplace, the premier annual buyer-supplier event in the region, to be held in Jamaica in May.

Ledesma spoke about the value of market intelligence through access to regional performance data and resources in the CHTA Data Center, educational webinars and masterclasses; opportunities for leadership and engagement in CHTA councils and committees; sharing of best practices in various aspects of business beyond the borders of individual destinations; and the availability of timely, curated news and information.

As part of her visit, Ledesma engaged in site visits to member hotels, learning about the hospitality sector’s needs and offering practical solutions to address them. She also explored Grenada’s scenic beauty and charm to deepen her understanding of the destination.

Warm Grenadian hospitality was extended to Ledesma through a reception held in her honor at Calabash Grenada, providing an intimate setting for networking and dialogue among guests, including Senator Adrian Thomas, Minister of Tourism; Senator Salim Rahaman; Nikoyan Roberts, Head of Sales and Marketing at the Grenada Tourism Authority; and other government officials and tourism leaders.

“Vanessa’s visit symbolizes a significant step forward in strengthening the relationship and fostering growth of the Grenadian hospitality sector. The GHTA looks forward to leveraging her expertise and insights to further elevate our industry,” remarked Arlene Friday, CEO of GHTA.

Continue Reading

Caribbean News

Jamaica agricultural advancements despite bad weather

Published

on

Credit:JIS

Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#Jamaica#Agriculture, April 11, 2024 Despite the bad weather conditions in 2023, especially the drought period, Jamaica was able to achieve its second highest domestic crop production on record with over 700 thousand tonnes of local crops produced. This was announced by state minister in the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Mining, Franklin Witter, on Sunday April 7, at the 41st annual National Farmers’ Month church service held in Trelawney.

 

Continue Reading

Caribbean News

Guyana Wildfires

Published

on

Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#Wildfires#Guyana, April 11, 2024 – Wildfires have been affecting Guyana, the most recent in the Timehri Community on the north-eastern side since April 4, according to a release from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Operations (ECHO).

The report says according to PAHO, as of April 5, 28 people have been displaced in a shelter in the Santa Aratack Village. Additionally, the JRC Global Wildfire Information System, also featured in the release, says the total burnt area is more than 16,500 ha.

This comes nearly a month after a 93 year old man was killed by a wildfire in north West Guyana.

Reports say the entire region is dealing with wildfires including Venezuela, Central America and Mexico with a record number of fires, and a major increase compared to the same period in 2023.

 

Continue Reading

FIND US ON FACEBOOK

TRENDING