Category Archives: Economics/Finance

Guyana Faces a Moral Crisis – By Rosaliene Bacchus

Originally posted on Three Worlds One Vision:

Homeless and Invisible - GuyanaHomeless man asleep on sidewalk outside Parliament Buildings
Georgetown, Guyana – October 2014
Photo Credit: Mark Jacobs

On Monday, November 10, 2014, the Guyana government entered into shutdown mode. Facing the threat of a “no-confidence” motion from a combined opposition against his administration, President Donald Ramotar “prorogued” the 65-member National Assembly or Parliament. He invoked a provision from the 1980 Constitution, framed by the former autocratic government of President Forbes Burnham. Such a drastic move could throw the country into a state of limbo for up to six months.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union and end of the Cold War, the Indo-Guyanese dominated party of Marxist Cheddi Jagan finally came to power in 1992 and has remained in power since then. Government corruption, unsolved criminal activity, police brutality, and extra-judicial killings – common during the Burnham dictatorship – continue unabated.

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Guyana floods update: Country braces for more heavy rains – 22 November 2014

Country braces for more heavy rains

November 22, 2014 | By |    …as city grapples with flood aftermath
City still under water following Thursday's flooding.

Click to enlarge

Businesses and civilians in Georgetown and surrounding areas are still grappling with the effects of the major flood which occurred on Thursday. Even as many are counting their losses, there is the promise of more heavy rainfall in the upcoming days.

Thousands of Guyanese in the capital city, and other coastal districts, awoke on Thursday to find their homes and environs inundated. This was caused by incessant overnight rainfall. The inclement weather also forced the closure of both public and private schools for the remainder of the week.

Checks around the city yesterday by this newspaper revealed that civilians and business persons are still reeling from damages to their homes and entities. Several persons, who spoke to Kaieteur News, said they tried to take swift action to decrease the damage associated with floods. Continue reading

Five Million Down.. Another 6.5 Million More To Go

Five Million Down.. Another 6.5 Million More To Go

By Felicia J. Persaud

Obama - Immigration announcementPhoto: President Obama announces executive action on immigration from the East Room of the White House on Nov. 20, 2014.

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. Nov. 21, 2014: One hundred and two open letters to President Barack Obama, undocumented youth risking arrest and deportation each time they occupied offices of members of Congress; parents who participated in direct actions and sit-ins in front of the White House; countless immigrant activists, and organizations rallying the President and Democrats, all came down to Thursday night, November 20th, and excitement over the long overdue and much publicized executive immigration action announcement.

For some five million undocumented immigrants in the U.S., Thanksgiving came early. It now means an opportunity to apply for a work permit and travel documents and step out of the so-called shadows and into the light.  Continue reading

Traveling Through Multiple Europes

Traveling Through Multiple Europes

Geopolitical Weekly - Stratfor - Tuesday, November 4, 2014 -

Europe is overcrowded with people and with nations. Six decades ago, the need to suppress the dangerous forces of nationalism led to the unprecedented political, economic and social experiment now known as the European Union. The hundreds of thousands of EU citizens working across the Continent and the lack of border controls between member states show that the experiment has been successful in many ways. However, rising nationalism, pervasively high unemployment and a growing sense of frustration with governing elites also highlight the serious limitations of the European project. Over the past 12 months, I have traveled extensively throughout Europe, observing firsthand how the global economic crisis is reawakening dormant trends along the Continent’s traditional fault lines.

The crisis is having an uneven effect on EU member states because the eurozone locks countries with different levels of economic development into the same currency union. Europe’s geography helps explain these differences: Countries in the south have traditionally dealt with high capital costs and low capital-generation capacity, while countries in the north have seen the opposite.   Continue reading

Indians stashing ‘black money,’ beware. High court wants your name

Indians stashing ‘black money,’ beware. High court wants your names

Supreme Court in Delhi tells lawmakers that a list of secret foreign bank account holders that may be hiding illegal funds must be handed over

india

The Government of India submitted the list of all black money account holders to the Supreme Court on Wednesday as directed. Attorney General of India Mukul Rohatgi said that the government has submitted a list of around 627 names who have their accounts in HSBC bank. He added that all assessments have to be completed by 31st March 2015. The sealed covers will be opened by SIT which will proceed according to law after opening the seals.

Christian Science Monitor By Syed Nazakat – October 28, 2014 7:45 PM
The Government of India submitted the list of all black money account holders to the Supreme Court on Wednesday as directed. Attorney General of India Mukul Rohatgi said that the government has submitted a list of around 627 names who have their accounts in HSBC bank. He added that all assessments have to be completed by 31st March 2015. The sealed covers will be opened by SIT which will proceed according to law after opening the seals.

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange once said that Indians have more black money stashed in tax havens than any other nationality.  Continue reading

Guyana: Sliding further downhill – commentary

Sliding further downhill

OCTOBER 25, 2014 | BY EDITORIAL

The majority of our skilled people is migrating, and not only does this not augur well for the future, it means that the country is getting less for its investment in human development; training people is a very costly exercise. The country is gradually sliding downhill and those with alternatives are quickly taking their leave. In other words, not taking chances with their chances.

For as long as we could remember we have been producing our own teachers, nurses, skilled artisans and the like. Such was our training regimen that all those who graduated were good enough to work in any part of the world.

There was a time when the cost of living was such that we were content to stay and serve. But there was always the lure of life overseas. That lure now has so many of us leaving that we cannot train people fast enough and even those we train are never good enough because their foundation was rather weak. Things had even reached the stage where we were forced to lower the entrance qualifications to our top learning institutions.  Continue reading

Brazil’s presidential election -Why Brazil needs change

Brazil’s presidential election -Why Brazil needs change – updated

Voters should ditch Dilma Rousseff and elect Aécio Neves

Oct 18th 2014 | The Economist

IN 2010, when Brazilians elected Dilma Rousseff as president, their country seemed at last to be living up to its huge potential. The economy expanded by 7.5% that year, setting the seal on eight years of faster growth and a steep fall in poverty under Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Ms Rousseff’s political mentor and the leader of the centre-left Workers’ Party (PT). But four years later that promise has disappeared. Under Ms Rousseff the economy has stalled and social progress has slowed. Sanctions-hit Russia aside, Brazil is by far the weakest performer in the BRIC club of big emerging economies. In June 2013 over a million Brazilians took to the streets to protest against poor public services and political corruption.

Ever since the protests the polls have shown that two-thirds of respondents want the next president to be different. So one might have expected them to turf out Ms Rousseff in the first round of the country’s presidential election on October 5th. In the event she secured 41.6% of the vote and remains the narrow favourite to win the run-off ballot on October 26th. Continue reading

TRIUMPH OF THE “UNDERCLASS” – By Hubert Williams

TRIUMPH  OF  THE  “UNDERCLASS”

               By  Hubert  Williams

Boston, Massachusetts, October 21, 2014 — In 2003, in a lengthy document sent the office of Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton, reacting to her extremely well presented book “Living History”, I had expressed misgivings over societal weaknesses and the emerging role of well-educated, highly-placed working women which could have the unintended consequence under Democracy of an ‘underclass’ literally controlling small jurisdictions such as those in the English-speaking Caribbean… and, in the fullness of time, large jurisdictions, too.

She is absolutely a “women’s libber” and a very strong proponent of an education system which separates girls and boys, particularly at the secondary and tertiary levels. Of her own experience at Wellesley College in Boston (one of the world’s foremost women’s universities), she wrote:

“Unlike some of the smart girls in my high school, who felt pressure to forsake their own ambitions for more traditional lives, my Wellesley classmates wanted to be recognized for their ability, hard work and achievements. This may explain why there is a disproportionate number of women’s college graduates in professions in which women tend to be under-represented.” Continue reading

One Muslim state’s peaceful power transfer – commentary

One Muslim state’s peaceful power transfer

By the Monitor’s Editorial Board October 14, 2014 – [source]

  • Indonesian President-elect Joko Widodo, center, speaks with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, right, during their visit to a market in Jakarta, Indonesia, Oct 13. The two discussed ways to use the online social network for national development.

With four Muslim countries now splintered in armed conflict (Libya, Syria, Iraq, and Yemen), the world can be grateful that the largest Muslim country will achieve a peaceful milestone Oct. 20. For the first time in its history, Indonesia will see a transfer of power from one popularly elected president to another: A humble former furniture maker, Joko Widodo, will take over from a former Army general, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.  Continue reading

DIASPORA – editorial in Stabroek News

DIASPORA -  editorial in Stabroek News

Guyana: President Ramotar

President Ramotar

Last week GINA, the Government’s information service, reported that President Donald Ramotar had met Guyanese in Washington and Queens, New York, in the course of his visit to the United Nations, and that he had asked them to return home and invest in the country’s economy. One wonders if he was serious when he put that question to his compatriots in the diaspora, or whether he was just going through the motions.

If he was serious, then he is truly divorced from reality; we have been waiting twenty-two years for this flood of returnees to swamp us with their US dollars, their overseas skills and their drive to nurture their homeland, and no one, even President Ramotar one would think, anticipates that they will do so in the immediate future.

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