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Guyana committed to sustainability of rum industry – Granger

first_img… viability of industry threatened by US trade measurePresident David Grangerhas declared his commitment to providing much needed support to the local rum industry to ensure its survival and sustainability in the face of the major threat to its competitiveness on account of trade-distorting measures taken by the United States federal government.He made this declaration Monday last while addressing a gathering of industry leaders, the business community and the diplomatic corps who were present during the launch of Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) El Dorado Grand Special Reserve 50th Anniversary Special Rum at the El Dorado Rum Heritage Centre.Caribbean countries stand to lose approximately US$700 million per annum if the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico are allowed to continue current arrangements in which the governments of those two United States possessions enjoy a tax rebate from the US Federal Government to provide huge benefits to companies to produce and market rum for the United States market.In 2012, Caricom countries had confronted the US on the unfair rum trade in the region and the worrying threat it poses on the competitiveness of Caribbean rum entering the US markets.Though the engagement proved to be futile, President Granger urged the Caricom nations to sustain its protests against the actions being taken by the US government.“The Caribbean Community’s Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) has protested against these discriminatory measures. They are seen as being inimical to the sale of Caribbean rums in the US market and threaten the “long-term viability of this very important industry on our region,” he expressed.He noted too that litigation in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is likely to be an extremely expensive and exhausting process and therefore Caricom must use its diplomatic strength to help resolve this problem, which is affecting the health of economies and the wealth of countries.President Granger went on to underscore the importance of the rum industry to the local economy, acknowledging the country’s only two rum production companies (DDL and Banks DIH Limited) – which are also the two largest local corporations.He explained that because of the profitability of the rum enterprise, the two corporate giants earned the ability to diversify its operations into banking, fast food and shipping – ultimately creating thousands of jobs.In this regard, the President noted that Guyana’s rum industry is precious and it is therefore critical that it be protected and preserved in the face of the US government’s actions.“Workers jobs and the livelihood of those who indirectly depend on the industry are at stake. The loss of foreign exchange and excise earnings by the rum industry can result in severe problems in our economy.Guyana’s rums are an important economic sub-sector. It is in the national interest to ensure the survival and sustainability of this industry. The government of Guyana is committed to supporting the industry,” he stated.last_img read more

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Labor Ministry Fines ArcelorMittal, China Union, Western Cluster, Others

first_imgThe Ministry of Labor has imposed fines on several institutions for employing non-Liberians without valid work permits and their failure to submit statistical reports to the Ministry in keeping with Regulation No. 17, Section 3(a) and Section 4(b) of the Labor Practices Laws of Liberia.Those fined include: Arcelor Mittal, China Union, Western Cluster and PIOM.Others are: Cavalla Rubber Corporation, Maryland Oil Palm Plantation, Nimba Rubber Inc., Morris American Farm, Firestone Liberia, Sime Darby, Lee Groups of Companies, APM Terminal, Fuzion Inc; LIB_24 Radio and TV, among others.The Labour ministry mandates all employing entities to adhere to the Labour Practices Laws of Liberia and cautions them that it will not relent in ensuring compliance.The fine is to ensure that Liberian employment interest at work places is prioritized. The Ministry further announced that it will continue to adopt and implement measures to enforce compliance with its mandate to ensure that Liberians are given the required employment preferences.In another development, the ministry has denied several applications for the issuance of alien work permits from employers seeking employment for non-Liberians for various positions in their institutions.The ministry wants the public and employing entities to be aware of a vigorous enforcement of its renewed commitment to grant preferential treatment to Liberians for certain positions at work places in line with the Labour Practices Laws of the country.It can be recalled that during several consultative meetings held in the last quarter of 2014 with stakeholders in the agricultural, forestry, telecommunications and mining sectors, as well as with the leaderships of the Indian and Lebanese Communities and other major stakeholders in the labor sector, these matters were flagged and the Ministry’s action is in keeping with previous commitments.Labour Minister Neto Zarzar Lighe, informed employers that his ministry will not be issuing work permits for non-Liberians seeking employment for positions such as Accountants, Human Resource Managers and Administrative Managers.The MoL, at the same time called on all employers to advertise vacancies for those positions in the local media and on their respective websites to allow qualified Liberians at home and abroad to compete for those positions. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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