Archive | TOURISM

Theresa May said at the lord mayor’s banquet that there remained ‘significant issues’ to resolve in the Brexit talks.

Brexit: time running out as Theresa May claims talks in ‘the endgame’

PM says negotiations with EU ‘immensely difficult’ as summit deadline comes under threat

Theresa May said at the lord mayor’s banquet that there remained ‘significant issues’ to resolve in the Brexit talks.
Theresa May said at the lord mayor’s banquet that there remained ‘significant issues’ to resolve in the Brexit talks. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA

Theresa May’s efforts to secure a Brexit deal by the end of March have suffered a serious setback after it emerged that UK and European Union negotiators were struggling to bridge the gap over the Irish border backstop in time for a November summit.

The prime minister was forced to admit that “significant” issues remained despite talks that went on until the early hours of Monday morning. Unless there is dramatic progress by the end of Wednesday, the exit timetable will become increasingly squeezed.

Cabinet members, who had been expecting to sign off the final Brexit negotiating position on Tuesday, were told that the issue would hardly be discussed at the meeting beyond an update of the UK’s preparedness for no deal.

Negotiators stayed up until 2.45am on Monday in pursuit of a breakthrough that did not come as the EU made a series of last-minute demands by attaching fresh conditions to the customs backstop, which is designed to come into force if no long-term free trade deal can be signed by the end of 2020.

That failure to progress the talks almost certainly delays agreement at an EU level until a summit scheduled for 13/14 December and makes it increasingly difficult for the critical “meaningful final vote” of MPs on May’s deal to be held before Christmas.

Addressing the lord mayor’s banquet at the Guildhall in London on Monday night, May said: “The negotiations for our departure are now in the endgame”. But in remarks aimed at Brussels negotiators, she added that they could not expect concessions this week just to keep the idea of a November Brexit summit alive.

“We are working extremely hard, through the night, to make progress on the remaining issues in the withdrawal agreement, which are significant,” the prime minister said. “Both sides want to reach an agreement, but what we are negotiating is immensely difficult.”

May’s remarks came as No 10 tried to accuse the EU of trying to bounce the UK into a deal. There had been a brief flurry of speculation at lunchtime, following a report in the Financial Times, that a deal could be close, based on one account of a briefing given by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, to European ministers. One witness said that Barnier had said “the parameters of a possible agreement are very largely defined”, but No 10 said any suggestion that a deal was close should be taken with “a bucket of salt”.

Labour, meanwhile, is to step up the pressure on the government by launching a bid on Tuesday to force ministers to publish the government’s legal advice on May’s Irish backstop plan before MPs vote to approve her Brexit deal, saying it would be unacceptable for MPs to be kept “in the dark” on how any agreement was reached.

In Brussels, Barnier told European affairs ministers for the 27 EU members that the negotiators had so far failed to make the decisive progress. “Barnier explained that intense negotiating efforts continue, but an agreement has not been reached yet,” a statement said.

No 10 is faced with a series of emerging demands from the EU, which wants to attach new conditions to the backstop.

Brussels wants the UK to sign up to “dynamic” alignment with state aid and future environmental, social and labour regulations, which would in effect force parliament to cut and paste EU rules into British law.

A commitment on the side of the British to provide the European fishing fleet with access to UK seas after Brexit has also been proposed by member states as a condition for agreement on the customs union.

It is not yet agreed how the backstop can be terminated and there are growing concerns across the Conservative party that it could be used to keep the UK in a long-term customs union with the EU without a say in its regulation. More than 50 hard Brexiters have said they will vote against the Chequers plan, which proposed to keep the UK aligned with EU rules on food and goods after Brexit.

Jo Johnson, the former rail minister who resigned from the government on Friday to support a second referendum , will speak to a rally in Westminster on Tuesday opposing the prime minister’s plan to take Britain out of the EU.

“I am concerned that a Conservative government is preparing to leave the British people ill-informed over the consequences, with the decision not to publish evidence showing this is a worse deal that the one we already have inside the EU,” Johnson wrote in an article for the Times.

Earlier on Monday, Penny Mordaunt, the international development secretary, became the second cabinet minister in two days to warn that the prime minister did not have a completely free hand in her negotiations with Brussels.

“The important thing is that there’s two checks on this deal – there’s cabinet and there’s parliament. And so cabinet’s job is to put something to parliament that is going to deliver on the referendum result. We need to work together as a cabinet to do that,” Mordaunt said.

Brexiter Andrea Leadsom said on Sunday that she was “sticking in government” to ensure the UK was not trapped in a customs arrangement against its will.

UK sources said last week that they hoped Dominic Raab, the Brexit secretary, could make a visit to Brussels on Tuesday to unveil a deal and prepare the way for a Brexit summit. But No 10 said on Monday that there were no plans for him to make that journey.

EU capitals also want time to examine any agreement made between the European commission and the UK before it is published. France and Germany are understood to have made the point forcefully to Barnier.

The withdrawal agreement, the draft exit treaty, is already running to more than 400 pages of dense legal text. It is expected to be published when a deal is agreed in principle between the UK and the EU, accompanied by a political declaration about the future trade relationship between the two.

Michael Roth, Germany’s minister for the EU, said the member states had made “many compromises but the room for manoeuvre is very much limited and our British friends know exactly where our discussions are”.

Belgium’s deputy prime minister, Didier Reynders, told reporters: “We have time but not so much, so for this moment it’s very difficult to make real progress but before Christmas I’m hoping that it will be possible”.

Simon Coveney, the Irish deputy prime minister and foreign minister, said it was “a very important week for the Brexit negotiations”.

“There is clearly work to do between the two negotiating teams and I think we need to give them time and space now to finish that job,” he said.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Featured, International, Local, News, Politics, Regional, TOURISM, UK - Brexit0 Comments

IMG-20181112-WA0006 (1)

No access to areas south of Belham Valley

Important Notice especially for visitors, tourists and sightseers

This will be a setback for tourists on the Windstar Vessel due to arrive on Tuesday, Crafters, and especially taxi drivers who according to DiscoverMNI were urged to be ready!

 Further to potential flood warnings – comes this news later in the day

The Disaster Management Coordination Agency (DMCA) in consultation with the Commissioner of the Royal Montserrat Police Service (RMPS) has taken a decision to cease access to areas south of Belham Valley.

 The decision was taken due to the road being compromised and also to allow the authorities to carry out remedial work on the road in an effort to ensure the safety of all users.

 The road at Belham Valley will, therefore, be closed from 5 o’clock this afternoon and a further update will be given in due course.

 Persons, south of Belham are asked to make their way to the north immediately.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Climate/Weather, Environment, Featured, Government Notices, International, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM, Travel0 Comments

Montserrat participating in FCCA conference after a decade.

Montserrat participating in FCCA conference after a decade.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, Nov 5, CMC – The Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Conference opened here on Monday with Montserrat participating in the five-day event after a 10 year absence.

A statement from the Montserrat government said that its participation in the event is a collaborative effort as part of the twinning initiative between itself and the Antigua and Barbuda government.

Premier Donaldson Romeo

The FCCA conference brings together over 100 cruise executives and 1,000 industry stakeholders. It is aimed at fostering a better understanding of the inner workings of the cruise industry, while at the same time, providing an opportunity for attendees to improve their cruise tourism business.

A number of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders including St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Allen Chastanet and his Barbados counterpart, Mia Mottley are attending the event that ends on Friday.

The Montserrat delegation is being led by Premier Donaldson Romeo and the government statement said that the purpose of island’s attendance is to encourage cruise lines to make Montserrat a port of call in their 2021 cruise schedule.

“The Tourism Division anticipates that this will spin off towards increased ferry day-trip numbers, as some of the large cruise lines that dock in Antigua, depart as late as 8:00 p.m.(local time)  which is ideal for Montserrat to target.

It said that Premier Romeo will also engage in one-to-one meetings with key cruise line officials, during which the proposed port development on the volcano ravaged British Overseas Territory will be a major focus, as well as promoting Montserrat’s unique shore excursions.

The statement said that the Tourism Division will be sharing a booth with the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and that the “contingent will have the opportunity to interface with many cruise executives, suppliers and tour operators”.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, International, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

Regional hoteliers says region losing billions of dollars annually

Regional hoteliers says region losing billions of dollars annually

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Oct31, CMC -The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) says empty hotel rooms are costing the Caribbean billions of dollars in economic opportunity each year.

CHTA Director General, Frank Comito, said with an estimated 84,000 hotel rooms vacant each night, filling just 10 per cent of them would inject nearly two billion US dollars into the region annually.

CHTA Director General, Frank Comito

“We have the room capacity across most of our destinations to further increase the economic impact of tourism. Focused efforts by the public and private sectors to fill the large amount of unused room inventory will yield considerable results,” said Comito, who is also the CHTA chief executive officer.

The CHTA will host Caribbean Travel Marketplace, the Caribbean’s largest tourism marketing event, in Montego Bay, Jamaica from January 29-31 next year and Comito spoke of the importance of attending the event.

Comito said that research has shown that an additional 10 per cent in visitor expenditures would generate US$628 million more in room revenue each year, plus two-thirds of added spend per visitor on food and beverage, attractions, taxis and ground transportation, retail purchases and local services.

“Filling hotel rooms generates the highest spinoff impact on tax revenues, employment and economic activity compared with all other important categories of visitors, including cruise passengers, renters and yachters,” said Comito.

“If you’re looking for business opportunity to expand and grow in the region you should be attending Caribbean Travel Marketplace,” he said, adding that online registration for the CHTA’s annual signature event is already open and participants can take advantage of the special rates which are available until November 6 this year.

Comito said that CHTA and its regional partner, the Barbados-based Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO)  recently launched “The Rhythm Never Stops”, a marketing campaign which illuminates the Caribbean’s diverse cultures, vibrancies, unmatched natural beauty, and countless attractions and activities all complemented by the incredible hospitality of its people.

““As more people discover all that the Caribbean offers, we’re confident that the region’s popularity will continue to grow.”

CHTA said that Caribbean Travel Marketplace 2019, which is being produced in collaboration with co-hosts Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association, the Jamaica Tourist Board and the Jamaica Ministry of Tourism, is expected to attract an estimated 1,000 delegates from 26 Caribbean countries, who will meet with buyers from over 20 markets.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, International, Local, News, TOURISM0 Comments

Caribbean countries sign historic Escazu Agreement

Caribbean countries sign historic Escazu Agreement

UNITED NATIONS, Sept 28, CMC – Caribbean leaders were joining their counterparts in Latin America in signing the Escazu Agreement that seeks to protect the rights of access to information, public participation and access to justice in environmental matters.

The leaders of Antigua and Barbuda and St. Lucia were the latest to affix their signatures to the accord that the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) said is poised to be the new environmental instrument synonymous with non-discrimination, transparency and greater democracy for all.

St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet singing the Escazú Agreement on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly

“This agreement will help fight crime, poverty, inequality and is crucial to the protection of the environment in general. The agreement is sometimes referred to as ‘environmental democracy,’ which is a new legal term that implies the participation of all in protecting the environment,” according to an Antigua and Barbuda government statement.

It quoted Prime Minister Gaston Browne as outlining the importance of Antigua and Barbuda taking the bold step in becoming signatory to the agreement.

“The island is regarded as one of the front runners within the region with a progressive climate agenda, with the hope of transforming Antigua and Barbuda into a climate smart country,” it said.

Or its part, St. Lucia said it has put itself safely at the vanguard of sustainable development with equality at its core, when it joined other countries in signing the agreement that will be open for signatures until September 26, 2020.

Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, joined his Antigua and Barbuda counterpart as well as the leaders of Guyana, Brazil, Costa Rica, Argentina, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Uruguay in signing the agreement.

The Escazú Agreement was adopted on 4 March 2018, in Escazú, Costa Rica and ECLAC said that it reflects regional ambitions, priorities and uniqueness, while addressing environmental protection and management in sustainable leveraging of natural resources, preserving biodiversity, combatting desertification and climate change, and building disaster resilience.

The Escazú Agreement is the only treaty to emerge from the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Río+20). It is also the first regional environmental treaty of LAC countries, and the first with binding provisions on defenders of human rights in environmental matters.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, Education, Environment, International, News, Opinions, Regional, Science/Technology, Technology, TOURISM0 Comments

trip savy logo

A Guide to the Safest and Most Dangerous Caribbean Islands

From Natalie Holloway’s tragic disappearance in Aruba to the murder of a honeymooning couple in Antigua and the oft-repeated advice of “don’t leave the resort,” crime has colored the perceptions of Caribbean travelers. A few high-profile incidents can quickly get visitors wondering how they can stay safe during a Caribbean vacation, and what may be lurking beneath the sun-and-fun image promoted in tourist brochures.

In general, fear of crime in the Caribbean is generally overblown. However, the overall murder rate among developing nations in the Caribbean is nearly four times the average rate in North America. High rates of unemployment and a lack of economic development along with narcotics trafficking breed crime, violence, and gang activity in many Caribbean nations. Thus, to avoid becoming a victim of a violent crime, do not associate with criminals by buying drugs or taking part in other illegal activities. 

Based on crime and murder rates, which describe the number of crimes or murders reported to law enforcement agencies per 100,000 inhabitants, here is a list of the safest and most dangerous places for tourists in the Carribean. It’s important to keep in mind that safety is relative, and nowhere is completely free of dangers, including your own backyard. Make sure you do your due diligence, try to avoid looking like a tourist, and keep your wits about you.  

Before you begin planning your Caribbean getaway, be sure to check the U.S. State Department crime warnings for Caribbean destinations as well as the rates and reviews at TripAdvisor for more tips and advice for planning a safe and budget-friendly vacation. 

 
 
  • 01 of 12

    Montserrat

    Montserrat - Natural Disasters - Soufriere Hills Volcano

    Corbis via Getty Images / Getty Images

    Montserrat, nicknamed “The Emerald Isle of the Caribbean” both for its terrain and the heritage of its inhabitants, is a British territory in the Leeward Islands is considered to be the safest island in the Caribbean, with its last recorded murder occurring in 2008, according to Nation Master

  • 02 of 12

    St. Barts

    Scenic View Of Sea Against Sky

    Perre Thierry / EyeEm / Getty Images

    St. Barts is short for Saint Barthélemy. This Francophone island is a French overseas collectivity. Known as a party place for the rich and famous, it is also dubbed safe due to its murder rate of zero. 

  • 03 of 12

    The British Virgin Islands

    British Virgin Islands

    Artifacts Images / Getty Images

    The British Virgin Islands consists of Tortola, the largest and most inhabited island, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, Josh Van Dyke, and over 50 more smaller islands and cays. The murder rate was last recorded at 2 per 100,000 back in 2006, making it a very safe destination for travelers.

  • 04 of 12

    The Cayman Islands

    Caribbean, Cayman Islands, George Town, Westbay and Cypress Pointe

    Westend61 / Getty Images

    The Cayman Islands is another British Overseas Territory widely known as a financial haven for wealthy individuals, and thus, is very safe for travelers. The murder rate is fairly low, and around the same as the United States (4.7 per 100,000 population).

     
  • 05 of 12

    Bonaire

    Caribbean, Bonaire, Kralendijk, coast and townscape

    Westend61 / Getty Images

    Bonaire is a part of the ABC islands and is a special municipality of the Netherlands. Unlike most Caribbean islands, it is located outside of Hurricane Alley and years go by without a single homicide on the island. However, in May 2017 two murders occurred within 24 hours, to the shock and horror of both travelers and locals alike.

  • 06 of 12

    Antigua and Barbuda

    Nelson's Dockyard and English Harbour in Antigua

    Daisuke Kishi / Getty Images

    Antigua and Barbuda is a sovereign state in the Americas and British Commonwealth. It is nicknamed the “Land of 365 Beaches” and maintains a​ very low crime rate.

  • 07 of 12

    Martinique

    View on the village Bourg des Anses dArlet, Martinique, France

    Severine BAUR / Getty Images

    Martinique is an overseas region of France located in the Lesser Antilles. While it has the highest murder rate of the islands on this list, the rate was still low at just 17, recorded in 2009

  • 08 of 12

    Puerto Rico

    North Coast of San Juan, Puerto Rico - USA

    Sandra Leidholdt / Getty Images

    The United States territory Puerto Rico makes the list due to the high murder rate of 24.4 per 100,000 that has only increased since the devastating damage caused by Hurricane Maria in September 2017.

     
  • 09 of 12

    Trinidad and Tobago

    Parlatuvier, Tobago, Trinidad & Tobago

    by Marc Guitard / Getty Images

    Trinidad and Tobago is a sovereign state in the Commonwealth of Nations and maintains a high murder rate, 472 as of 2010.

  • 10 of 12

    The Dominican Republic

    Bridge to Nowhere. Samanà, Dominican Republic.

    © Marco Bottigelli / Getty Images

    The Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti, has an extraordinarily high murder rate, at 2,513 recorded in 2011 alone.

  • 11 of 12

    St. Kitts and Nevis

    Basseterre St. Kitt's Nevis

    tillsonburg / Getty Images

    St. Kitts and Nevis, short for the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis, is located in the Leeward Islands. Its capital city, Basseterre, has the highest murder rate of any capital city in the world, and the overall homicide rate is the 8th highest across the globe. It goes without saying that traveling to this country is at your own risk. 

  • 12 of 12

    Jamaica

    Boats In Sea Against Blue Sky Taken In Ocho Rios, Jamaica

    Paul Thomas / EyeEm / Getty Images

    Jamaica has one of the highest murder rates in the world, but 70 percent of all crime is linked to the drug trade. Locals advise travelers to avoid some troubled spots in Kingston, Montego Bay, and other smaller cities.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, International, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

Canadian firm to construct hundreds of new houses in Dominica

Canadian firm to construct hundreds of new houses in Dominica

ROSEAU, Dominica, Sept 24, CMC – The Canadian-based Montreal Management Consultations Est. (MMCE) LTD will construct more than 300 houses here across the island over the coming months as the battered hurricane island continues its efforts to become the world’s first climate resilient country.

MMCE project manager, Chris Timmins, speaking at the signing ceremony here on Monday, said that the project would entail the construction of 66 units in each of the several communities like La Plaine, San Sauveur, Grand Fond, Castle Bruce and Delices on the east coast in the first instance.

Financial Secretary, Rosemund Edwards and the MMCE
chief executive officer, Dr. Anthony Haiden signing agreement.

He said in the northern area of Picard, 68 units are under construction and that a further 68 are to be built in Cotton Hill.

“We are also at City Square which is due to start in the final quarter of this year. It is a total unit, including commercial of 125 units,” Trimmins said after the contracts were signed between the Financial Secretary Financial Secretary, Rosemund Edwards and MMCe chief executive officer, Dr. Anthony Haiden.

Trimmins told the ceremony that following the passage of Hurricane Maria last year that left a trail of death and destruction, revisions had to be made of the intimal housing project in Bellview Chopin, south of here.

“Castle Bruce is scheduled to be completed by June 2019, while everything on the east coast will be completed and handed over. In Georgetown, Picard we anticipate and are confident in July 2019. Cotton Hill we are comfortable in September 2019,” he said.

“The Roseau City Square, it will be twelve months from commencement, so given the present status, we anticipate the completion no later than December 2019,” Timmins said, adding that the units will comprise 10 one-bedrooms, 55 two-bedrooms, 35 three-bedroom units and 25 commercial units.

“We are proud of our products. We have been on the island now for two years, we started up in Bellevue on residential construction in May 2017,” he said, adding “we feel that we now are in a position to offer to the country the most resilient product that is available with modern technology”.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Climate/Weather, Environment, Hurricane, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

One year later, Chief Minister pleased with progress after Hurricane Irma

One year later, Chief Minister pleased with progress after Hurricane Irma

By Kenton X. Chance

THE VALLEY, Anguilla, Sept 24, CMC — Chief Minister Victor Banks says he is pleased with the progress this British Overseas Territory has made in the year since it was impacted by Hurricane Irma that also  devastated a number of other Caribbean countries.

“I am extremely satisfied. I think we have done extremely well in Anguilla with the recovery process, as opposed to a number of other places that are still suffering as a result of it,” Banks told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).

Chief Minister Victor Banks (CMC Photo)

Irma was the strongest storm on record to exist in the open Atlantic region and claimed at least 130 lives as it made its way through the Lesser Antilles last September. The storm left USS64.76 billion in damage, making it the fifth-costliest tropical cyclone on record.

But one year later, Banks was happy to report that the electricity grid in Anguilla and the island’s telecommunications services were operating again.

“… the schools, have plans in place for reconstruction and rehabilitation, the port facilities at Blowing Point are being restored, the building has not started yet but we have put in place some temporary arrangements that we are improving on, as we speak, for the tourism season — a much more permanent temporary arrangement than the ones we have now in preparation for the construction of a state of the art terminal building in that area,” he told CMC.

The airport, an important piece of infrastructure in this tourism-dependent nation, is functional and is preparing to accept night flights.

“So, generally, I think that we have come a long way, restored ourselves to a level of normalcy,” Banks said, adding “the community is getting it together.

“Homes are being rebuilt, repaired and there are still a small group of persons, especially persons who had challenges with their homes even before hurricane Irma that we still have to provide assistance for,” he said, adding that Hurricane Irma was the most severe weather event of recorded history to make landfall.

“It was a Category 5 and being a part of the experience myself, I know the winds were gusting. It has been recorded way over 185 miles per hour (mph). Some persons have reported somewhere in the region of 210 mph.”

Banks said he was grateful that the storm was a fast-moving one, passing over the 91 km square island, which is approximately 16 miles long by three miles wide, in six to seven hours.

The 70-year-old politician said that other storms have taken up to 12 and as much as 18 hours to pass over the island.

“The impact of it in Anguilla was mainly in terms of the destruction of homes and destruction of the utility distribution system. Twenty-five per cent of the electricity poles were down, but, in addition to that, there was damage to the electricity distribution network, the wiring and so on, in various areas of the island, to the extent that we were without electricity for many, many months.”

Electricity was restored to the entire island in December 2017, just three months after the hurricane.

Anguilla relies heavily on tourism and, for the most part, the hotel plants were severely damaged.

“As a consequence, many of the properties were not able to open before the first quarter of this year. Obviously, with the hotel plants down, being the main provider of employment, some two to three thousand persons were directly affected in that sector, not to mention the businesses that provide services and support for that sector as well.

“So customs revenue being our main source of income and accommodation tax being the other, you would imagine how this would have impacted our economy.”

As regards housing, Banks told CMC that Anguilla was fortunate in that construction is informed by the experience of major hurricanes such as Hurricane Donna in 1960 and Hurricane Louise in 1995.

“The kind destruction that came as a result encouraged persons to build more study homes, so, I would say 75 per cent of the homes in Anguilla have concrete roofing. As a consequence, most of the damage was to windows and doors, and in those cases where there were other forms of roofing, maybe 30 to 40 per cent of those homes were damaged again.”

The road infrastructure was not severely damaged but there are areas where there is need for support, he said, noting that the community and extended families came together and made sure that persons did not remain in emergency shelters for extended periods of time.

Banks, however, said there are a number of persons who still have severe damage to their homes, which they are in the process of rebuilding.

And while, in some cases, the insurance companies, “came out very well and people were able to respond to the damage within a short period of time” there are still instances where the insurers were not as ready in providing support as expected.

“… but there is a definite move to correct that issue and try to find as much support as possible,” Banks said, noting that some persons were not insured and would need assistance from several agencies, including the government, persons in the community, and philanthropic organisations.

“The hotel sector came together and formed a relief fund that supported a number of persons across the island and the government put in place a small programme of assistance for person who would have lost doors, windows and certain other issues impacting their homes, as well as the need for persons who are out of work.”

The Chief Minister said that his administration provided a compensation programme for persons who lost jobs in the hotel sector as a result of Hurricane Irma.

They were provided with support over the last six months after the storm to get them back on track, meet some of their obligations and prepare themselves for the workplace, he said, noting that while the population was generally prepared, he observed that too many persons waited until the last minute to do so.

“The level of preparedness took place over a shorter period than is advisable. I think that we need to put programme for readiness is in place much earlier,” he told CMC.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Climate/Weather, Hurricane, Local, News, Politics, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

TS Isaac - Image 2018-09-13 at 12.37.52 PM

Tropical Storm Isaac closes down Montserrat?

NOTICE

Cabinet has taken a decision to close all schools and government offices at 12 noon today for the passage of Tropical Storm Isaac. The private sector is also encouraged to close their businesses at 12 noon today as well, especially those with parents who have school-aged children.

According to Major Alvin Ryan, Interim Director at the Disaster Management Coordination Agency (DMCA), although, tropical storm conditions on Montserrat are not expected to get significantly worst, they are not anticipated to improve before 3 pm today and significant rainfall activity is forecast for this afternoon. Therefore, Mr Ryan says to err on the side of caution, all schools, government offices be closed at mid-day and the private sector is encouraged to do likewise.

By B. Roach

As The Montserrat Reporter is not obliged to carry ‘notices’ provided to us merely as information with no request for ‘paid’ publication which then obliges us, we cannot help but editorialise on what we consider to be poor decisions made without due regard for the economic status of the country. We of course regard this merely as a Notice to us, not otherwise, but find it aggravating. Oh for several reasons, not all mentioned here!

The very nature of the NDPRAC statement outlining the status of TS (Tropical Storm) Isaac suggests “to err on the side of caution’ is very questionable as to the understanding of the information available from all sorts of sources.

Along with what they are saying, for those concerned a constant look at the www.themontserratreporter.com does provide simple guide and information to the weather status affecting Montserrat from www.AccuWeather.com. We use also additional sources. There you will find hourly weather situations. E.g. Today, unlike earlier in the forecasts which promised possible thunderstorms etc. it shows showers and cloudy conditions from time to time into the evening. Tomorrow a national day of mourning , the passing of former CM Bertrand Osborne – is a holiday.

The question when all other circumstances, including ‘official’ forecasts should this encourage our government to take a decision to close down the country for the rest of the day, when the possible worst would have past. (See diagrams here).

current information:

Center location already west of the most affected islands, Martinique, Dominica, Guadeloupe

TS Isaac – Image 2018-09-13 at 12.37.52 PM – (See Montserrat outside the ball of activity!

These decisions are so symptomatic of the miserable state Montserrat has evolved into the over the past several years. Unfortunately, we see this situation as continuing for some time, throughout this decade, already too long especially as one listens to the ongoing discussions regarding an inquiry invoked by the UK Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC) into the UK’s future relationship with the OT’s. We will later inform of some 11-year-olds opinion on the matter.

And also the ill-advised and misguided, unprepared and bad futuristic calls being made these days.

l8r…

 

 

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Climate/Weather, Hurricane, Local, News, Opinions, Regional, TOURISM, Travel0 Comments

St Lucia Mango festival

First Saint Lucia Mango Festival gathered 500 visitors!

OECS Media release

Tuesday, September 11, 2018 — The OECS and EU sponsored Saint Lucia Mango Festival held last week met all expectations as the event brought together 16 exhibitors and 500 participants at the Constitution Park in Castries.

The festival aimed at raising public awareness on the Mango Biodiversity Project which was started in 2017 in order to limit land erosion in vulnerable riverbanks. The high soil stabilisation capacity of the mango tree enables a bio solution to this issue in Saint Lucia where 6.000 have already been planted. Mrs La Force-Haynes highlighted the success of the endeavour.    

The Festival was very well received by the public. We had about 16 participants who showcased different products made with mango and at least 500 visitors today. We hope to make the Saint Lucia Mango Festival an annual event ! Environmental Education Officer Nicole La Force-Haynes explained.  

On a regional level, The Saint Lucia Mango Festival formed part of the European Union funded GCCA iLand Resilience Project on climate change adaptation and sustainable land management. The GCCA project which started in 2014 includes multiple initiatives implemented in collaboration with governments of participating countries.   

Nine OECS Member States are direct beneficiaries of the GCCA Project. It is a 10.6 million euros project and there are various national and regional initiatives supported. Head of the OECS Environmental Sustainability Cluster Chamberlain Emmanuel stated.

Projects undertaken in the scope of GCCA iland Resilience encompasses coastal protection work in the British Virgin Islands and Saint Kitts and Nevis as well as rainwater harvesting in Grenada and Montserrat. Other physical adaptations measures coordinated by the OECS Commission are expected to contribute to a more climate resilience Eastern Caribbean in the future.

https://youtu.be/L3AYjyvzV34

First Saint Lucia Mango Festival gathered 500 visitors

Saint Lucia Mango Festival – stand of fresh fruit juices

St Lucia Mango festival – stand of brownies

Saint Lucia Mango Festival – mango jelly and mango cakes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saint Lucia Mango Festival – stand of mango cakes

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Local, News, OECS, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

Newsletter

Archives