Archive for the 'Finance' Category

After crisis food rationing?

By Raffique Shah
April 06, 2020

Raffique ShahWhen we will have overcome the COVID-19 multi-pronged attack on Trinidad and Tobago, we will face associated problems ranging from the economy under severe stress such as it has never been before, with unemployment at a crisis level, disruption of the education system leaving all stakeholders confused, and possible shortage of foods. Just when the population thought it was safe to exhale, having survived the deadliest pandemic in modern history, the bugle will sound summoning couch-and television-weary troops to do battle again, and likely yet again, for love of country.
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First Citizens, second citizens

By Raffique Shah
February 10, 2020

Raffique ShahThe recent announcement that the T&T Securities and Exchange Commission and Bourse Securities, Hassan Rahaman and Imtiaz Rahaman have reached an agreement whereby the latter three parties will pay the SEC $2.8 million pertaining to Hassan’s purchase of 659,588 shares of First Citizens Bank during the July 2013 Initial Public Offering, prompted me to speak out on a related matter.
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Amen, Brother Gregory

By Raffique Shah
January 14, 2020

Raffique ShahIf we think that the Trinidad and Tobago economy is in for another rough ride this year, possibly rougher than what we experienced over the past five years, we should read some of the grim global economic outlooks projected by international agencies such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs et al for almost every country in the world.
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Tithes & Thefts

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 8, 2020

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAfter it was reported that Pastor Vinworth Antony Dayal, leader of the Third Exodus Assembly Church, had assembled $29 million in assets over 19 years, Dr. Knolly Clarke, head of the IRO, declared: “Each church has their own way of doing things but in the Anglican Church and I think in the Roman Catholic, we have trustees. We audit our accounts every year. Our church is very strict with funds. It is not a one-man show” (Express, January 3, 2002).
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How Our Banking System Dis-serves the Poor

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 02, 2020

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeThe issuance of the polymer $100 bill and the hardships it caused many citizens should make us realize how the banking system discriminates against the poor and looks down on them for having created an alternative financial system that serves their needs.

The Trinidad Express, in an insightful editorial, offered a useful history of banking in this country. It cautioned: “It is in the interest of the national economy and social harmony that policy makers and bankers understand T&T’s culture of savings and design instruments appropriate to them instead of demeaning them and pushing them underground.” (December 19).
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Beware those with hidden agendas

By Raffique Shah
December 16, 2019

Raffique ShahI confess to being somewhat confused when the Minister of National Security, Stuart Young, and not the Minister of Finance, Colm Imbert, led the charge for the introduction of the new polymer $100 bills on behalf of the Government. It took me minutes to understand their motive for the swift phasing out of the old bills, rendering them of no value, and replacing them with the multi-security-features polymer notes.
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Mobilizing Our Social & Cultural Capital

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
October 22, 2019

All you guys have done is reference to us getting jobs. I do not want a job. I want change, I want a future….You are ignoring our future….What are you doing to give us a voice?

—Stefan Lander, student, St. Mary’s College

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeTo hear Colm Imbert, Minister of Finance, tell it, the 2020 budget has nothing to do with the upcoming local elections or the 2020 general elections. It emanated from the government’s genuine interest in the welfare of our people.

The words had barely come out of Imbert’s mouth when Rohan Sinanan, PNM’s campaign manager, declared: “I am very pleased; I think my job as campaign manager was made significantly easier with a wonderful budget” (Express, October 10).
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US demonising China

By Raffique Shah
July 12, 2019

Raffique ShahLast May, Minister of Finance Colm Imbert announced at a post-Cabinet media briefing that Shanghai Construction had been awarded a billion-dollar contract to build the Port-of-Spain General Hospital’s new central block. Minister Imbert said that the Chinese construction giant, which is no stranger to undertaking big projects in Trinidad and Tobago, had bid TT $1 billion, which was $600 million less than Bouygues Batiment, a French company.
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Identifying and fighting economic apartheid

By Raffique Shah
June 14, 2019

Raffique ShahTrinidad and Tobago should be grateful for having among its citizens patriots who are unafraid to speak out on issues that affect us all, and more importantly, who bear allegiance to the country, not to any political party. Of course, such persons have the right to support a party of their choice at any point in time. But they also jealously maintain their independence by criticising the policies and actions of the party they voted for when they are convinced it has made decisions that are inimical to the best interests of the nation.
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The Venezuela Myth Keeping Us From Transforming Our Economy

By Ellen Brown
February 09, 2019 – ellenbrown.com

USAModern Monetary Theory (MMT) is getting significant media attention these days, after Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said in an interview that it should “be a larger part of our conversation” when it comes to funding the Green New Deal. According to MMT, the government can spend what it needs without worrying about deficits. MMT expert and Bernie Sanders advisor Prof. Stephanie Kelton says the government actually creates money when it spends. The real limit on spending is not an artificially imposed debt ceiling but a lack of labor and materials to do the work, leading to generalized price inflation. Only when that real ceiling is hit does the money need to be taxed back, and then not to fund government spending but to shrink the money supply in an economy that has run out of resources to put the extra money to work.
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