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Finance

No Digital Money for US just yet says President Biden

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#USA, October 13, 2022 – US President Joe Biden is not replacing money with a digital spyware version despite several claims to the latter popping up across the web.

The US says it has not yet decided but is closely examining the potential of a U.S. Central Bank Digital Currency CBDC. It’s a polarizing move which some describe as a security risk and others hail as a necessary change in the ever advancing technological world.

Digital money has been around for years, with Bitcoin and many others but Central Banks or government banks are now catching on to the wave and creating CBDC’s. Jamaica and The Bahamas both launched their digital currencies, Jam-DEX and the Sand Dollar respectively, in recent years with The Bahamas leading the charge.

The U.S. Central Bank Digital Currency if it is launched would be a similar but significantly larger operation and will in fact be traceable but it won’t replace physical money…yet.

The US isn’t the only major world power looking to venture into the digital cash arena. The European Central Bank has also indicated they are looking to create a digital euro.

The Central Bank of The Bahamas was first in the world to launch its own digital currency, Sand Dollar in December 2019.  The Bank of Jamaica brought its Jam-DEX to the market in July this year.

Finance

TCI Cabinet Agrees to Funding for Farmers hit by Hurricane Fiona and more

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

 

#TurksandCaicos, January 24, 2023 – A new farmer information system as well as money for our farmers affected by Hurricane Fiona is on the way, this was one of the newest updates from the Cabinet.

The TCIG approved adjustments to the Agriculture Finance Support Programme (Agro-Grant Incentive) for the provision of compensation for registered farms; those which had incurred damages due to Hurricane Fiona last September.

Also approved were proposed measures to control the roaming of livestock in the country, covering the registration of livestock farms, construction and maintenance of holding facilities, and the transport of livestock, a long-time complaint from residents in Grand Turk especially.

Additionally, two new public holidays are on the roster as the Cabinet approved a national break for the observance of the King’s Coronation on 8 May 2023  and 19 June 2023 to mark the King’s Birthday.

Also in the cabinet meeting, TCIG approved the use of existing funds to retrofit the Turks and Caicos Islands Community College.

Approval was granted for the gradual outsourcing of janitorial services for government buildings, including schools.

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Finance

NIB Pensions are late but will be paid 

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By Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer 

 

 

#TurksandCaicos, January 23, 2023 – National Insurance Board Pensioners in the Turks and Caicos who were worried about missing their payments this month will be able to rest easy.  While they were slowed down because of the new increase, the cheques will come and will be even bigger than usual.

“Pension Payday just for this month will be slightly delayed because we have to go and make changes to our systems so that we can pay at the new levels and our IT team is working toward that end,” said Rhesa Cartwright, National Insurance Board CEO.

The new distribution date for pension monies is Wednesday January 25.

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Caribbean News

2023 Already showing BIG COSTS to countries for Illegal Migration

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By Dana malcolm 

Staff Writer

 

 

#TurksandCaicos, January 20, 2023 – In the first five months of 2022 there were over 500 migrants caught on TCI shores and the US Coast Guard recorded the highest number of at sea interceptions in decades; those were shocking numbers then.

In the first 18 days of 2023 alone more than half that number have been captured in thwarted human smuggling operations. The total, so far put at 435 people in the last 26 days and all are scheduled to be repatriated to their home countries.

As the situation with Haiti worsens, the fiscal burden to the Turks and Caicos’ shoulders is increasing. Last year in a scathing letter to the United Nations who had (and continue) to call on the surrounding states to make space for migrants seeking to escape the dangerous conditions in their home countries Minister of Immigration and Border Services Arlington Musgrove had indicated that an annual $3 million of the country’s revenue goes towards repatriations alone.

Edwin Astwood, Leader of the Opposition had said in the second quarter of the year that repatriations were costing TCI taxpayers $1,300 dollars per migrant. That dollar amount was before inflation around the world hit decades long highs and the cost of oil, airplane tickets and food skyrocketed. What would have cost $1,300 in early 2022 is certainly costing much more in early 2023 with the TCI’s last confirmed inflation rate at over nine percent.

Nigel Dakin, Governor and co-chair of National Security in the country described the issue as Haiti unintentionally “bearing down on the TCI” as its residents try to find a better life.

The Turks and Caicos has since put a freeze on new visitor visa requests from Haitians.

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