Did you ever wonder why T and Tec is talking about raising rates at the
same time as the Alcoa Deal is being pushed? The real truth is that Alcoa
is promised an huge amount of electricity at A DISCOUNT. In short,
Trinidadians will be asked to pay more for their electricity while Alcoa
gets a bargain out of tax payers expense.
The smelter plants are powered by Natural Gas. Great, more money for our
energy reserves? Actually, NO!!!
The government promised Alcoa a discount on our energy (gas,oil whatever it
may be) as well. While the whole world is willing to pay us the going rate
for our gas and oil, Alcoa gets it at a discounted price. Who has to pay
for this discount? The tax payers...you!
How many tanks do you have stacked up in your backyard just to be able to
take a shower in the morning? Is that normal? Do you think anybody in any
country where there are smelter plants has such a flaky and defective water
supply that they need tanks? How much worse will things get when Alcoa
comes in and not only consumes large amounts of water but also pollutes the
meager rest that's left over for us.
It has already been made clear that the government is planning the same
thing in Chatham and the Cedros Peninsula they done in Union Village. Take
people's land and offer them to live in NHA ghettos (some crime plan!) Our
constitution guarantees us that we can live where and how we want. The
government is using compulsory aquisition like a free for all shopping
spree. That is NOT the intention of the law. There has to be a clear need,
no alternative and a BENEFIT for Trinidians before you should take
somebodies land. As you can see from the facts above, there is NO BENEFIT
More Trinidad facts.....
"Trinidad and Tobago, the leading Caribbean producer of oil and gas, has
earned a reputation as an excellent investment site for international
businesses. Tourism is a growing sector, although not proportionately as
important as in many other Caribbean islands. The economy benefits from low
inflation and a growing trade surplus. Prospects for growth in 2004 are
good as prices for oil, petrochemicals, and liquified natural gas are
expected to remain high, and foreign direct investment continues to grow to
support expanded capacity in the energy sector. The government is coping
with a rise in violent crime." Source CIA Factbook
Except for the crime situation Trinidad sounds an excellent place for
investment for Alcoa. However the questions remains why is Trinidad
interested in an industry that will have to be subsidized and therefore
detrimental to the balance sheet of T & T. Yes, subsidized, because
electricity is such an important ingredient of an aluminum smelter (God
knows what will happen if the power goes out for a few hours) and for the
plant to be financially viable, the government will be building an
electrical plant for Alcoa and then charging them below market rates for
electricity for the plant to be profitable. Also for Alcoa the natural gas
prices would be lowered for it to be worthwhile for Alcoa to operate. Does
this make economic sense? Why will we go into an industry where we have to
sell our Natural Gas at prices below what we can get on the open market,
there isn't exactly a shortage of demand for natural gas. The government
will be going through all these hoops to establish a joint venture in which
they are the minority shareholder, this is not making sense.
Look at Trinidad's statistics:
GDP: -purchasing power parity - $11.48 billion (2004 est.)
GDP: - per capita: purchasing power parity - $10,500 (2004 est.)
Population below poverty line: 21% (1992 est.)
Labour force - by occupation: agriculture 9.5%, manufacturing, mining, and
quarrying 14%, construction and utilities 12.4%, services 64.1% (1997 est.)
Unemployment rate: 10.4% (2004 est.)
Oil - production: 140,000 bbl/day (2004 est.) At today's current oil price
of $60. US per barrel, that is sales of over $8 million US per day in oil
alone. Yet this revenue increase hasn't filtered down to the population.
Supplying the population's basics needs has not improved, food prices are
up, housing costs have increased and health care is still awful. One goes
to an emergency room at a major hospital and has to sit in pain for hours
before seeing a doctor.
Highways: total: 8,320 km paved: 4,252 km unpaved: 4,068 km (1999 est.)
All the money and our roads are still in disrepair.
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.6%
female: 98% (2003 est.)
With this high rate of literacy why in the world is the government
soliciting menial jobs? What about free computer training to make the
youths ready for information age jobs and not go backwards to the
With the billions of dollars that come from the coastline of the
south-west, is it unreasonable to have an ambulance in the peninsula or
does a child with the possibility of a fractured spine have to wait 3 hours
for an ambulance to come from San Fernando? Is it unreasonable for the
Icacos children to want a proper school? Alcoa is promising a community
centre to Cap-de-ville residents, but who would want to stay in a community
with smoke, dust, unhealthy emissions and the potential for diseases.
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