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Finance INSIDE

GRENADA

A Publication of the Ministry of Finance, Planning, Economy, Energy, Foreign Trade & Cooperatives

VAT IS COMING February 1st 2010

PROTOCOL FOR SOCIAL PARTNERSHIP A group of representatives from the local civil society organizations, who together with officials of the Ministry of Finance constitute the Social Pact Committee, met for the first time on Friday March 27th, 2009 to discuss the modalities for the drafting of a Protocol for Social Partnership for Grenada. The meeting was under chaired by the Hon. V. Nazim Burke, Minister for Finance. Since then they have been meeting on a continuous basis. This initiative follows the National Dialogue on the Impact of the Global Economic Crisis on Grenada, organized by the Multipartite Consultative Committee th on February 5 , 2009, and is a further manifestation of Government's response to the popular call for dialogue and coordinated action among stakeholders in working out responses to this crisis. The meeting examined the framework for the configuration of a Draft Social Pact for Grenada. This included the issues of representation on the Drafting Committee; the matter of chairmanship; the system of reporting; and the resources required for the execution of the initiative. In addition, the meeting looked a Statement of Principles and Objectives for the protocol itself.. The members of the Drafting Committee are as follows: Mr. Timothy Antoine Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance Sen. Christopher DeAllie Private Sector Representative Mrs. Madonna Harford President, Grenada Trade Union Council A Representative of the Non-Governmental Organizations It is expected that the Protocol will generally seek to create the basis for a partnership for economic survival and social cohesion in the face of the current

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Volume 5, Issue 2, March - April 2009

unprecedented global economic and financial crisis.

The Social partners and Government will be called on to work in a united manner around broad objectives for the repositioning of the Grenadian economy, the reduction of social disparities, increased competitiveness, increased productivity, good industrial relations and good governance. The specific objectives will include:

Hon. Prime Minister Tillman Thomas, Hon. Minister Nazim Burke and Social Partners at Consultation

• The stimulation of the productive sectors for the purposes of generating employment, foreign exchange and enhancing food security; • The stimulation of the construction sector; • The preservation of existing employment and the creation of new employment; • The achievement of a balance between prices and incomes; and • The provision of well targeted safety nets. The Social Pact Committee will submit the Draft Social Pact Protocol to the Multipartite Consultative Committee for review before the report is given to Cabinet.


E or's Remarks

FINANCIAL PRIORITIES With the world currently experiencing a financial meltdown, each and every one of us will at some point have to take stock of our financial situation. Yes, it will affect all of us and the sooner we face that reality, the better off we will be. So what should we do?

Although some may feel the effects more than others, one thing we can all do is to reestablish our financial priorities so that we take care of our needs rather than our greeds. In short, we separate our wants from our needs. And, how do we do this? We must first understand the meaning of the word priority. According to Merriam Webster Online Dictionary a priority is “something given or meriting attention before competing alternatives”. In other words, it is a preferential rating that allocates rights to goods and services that are usually in limited supply, that is, they are ranked as first, second, and third in a hierarchy of preferences. Whether we realize it or not, we set financial priorities on an almost daily basis. Some of us may decide that a new washing machine is more important than paying the electricity bill or the water bill and so forfeit paying that bill in a particular month in order to get that washing machine. This is not an extreme example, for some people actually do these things and end up in financial trouble. In the end, they may not have the electricity or water to run the machine! This scenario illustrates that there are consequences to our decisions, some of which could have far reaching financial implications. It further suggests that we need to carefully determine what should take precedence over the next and plan our expenditures accordingly - which all boils down to setting priorities. In theory, setting priorities is simple. Firstly, on a daily, weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis, one must decide on one's expenditures. Then, one has to compare the expenditure to one's available income, including salary and/or monies coming from other sources. If the expenditure turns out to be more than the income, then, keeping in mind that one cannot spend what one does not have, one must now decide on the most important expenditures and place them at the top of the spending list. If the decision is that the washing machine is more important than the electricity bill, then one must bear in mind that it may result in one being in the dark with no ability to use the machine after all!

basic priorities that pertain to everyone. These are water, food, and shelter and are called 'survival priorities.' In fact they are the basic needs of every living creature, including us humans, and must be placed at the top of everyone's priorities.

Therefore, when we get paid, we must first take care of food and accommodation. Deciding to skimp on the groceries and necessary health items in order to purchase a new perfume or so may turn out to be a decision with dire consequences. So too could be the decision to put off paying the rent/mortgage or utilities because when we do, we may start experiencing more and more problems resulting in extreme financial difficulties and even more stress! Transportation is usually a big expense, but that expense is necessary to get children to and from school and to get us to and from our places of work, where we earn our monies. We should therefore make sure we have sufficient money for transportation or make some meaningful arrangement to get us and our children to and from work and school. (It must be noted here that education should be considered a priority). Then, if there is any money left over, we need to put it away for the 'rainy day'. Yes we need to save! One can never tell when an emergency may 'pop up', or as the ole folk say, “when you may knock ova someone kerosin.” It is only after all this that we can think of the other things we may want. So, setting financial priorities is about what is most important. It is not about what we want. It is about postponing 'fun stuff' in order to ensure that our families have the basic needs and that bills are paid. Often it is about making sacrifices. This does not mean however, that we cannot have the 'fun stuff'; it just means that we have to do it on a different timetable. And finally, we have to learn to say “No”. No to friends/families who may encourage us to waiver from our priorities; no to temptations that may encourage us to forfeit the payment of a bill in order to go to the next big show; and no to the next 'get rich quick' phenomenon which is often very tempting, but which may turn out to be only a scam that may cause us to lose our monies in the long run, as has been the experience of many lately, some of whom have lost their entire life savings! So let us try to keep our 'heads on' and make the right decisions during this financial meltdown. Let us prioritise and focus on our needs and not on our greeds!

According to a writer by the name of Terry Craig, there are

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Pe tr


In the budget presentation earlier this year, strengthening economic management was identified as one of the key priorities of the Ministry of Finance for the fiscal year 2009. One of the critical elements in strengthening economic management is improvement in the performance of the Public Sector Investment Programme (PSIP). In order for there to be any improvement in the PSIP, we must institute a continuous programme of training for public officers who are entrusted with the responsibility for preparing and implementing projects across the various Ministries. Sisters and brothers, if we are to survive this current Global Financial Crisis and in light of the constraints we face because of our huge national debt, we will have to redouble our efforts at resource mobilization to be able to finance our development agenda. For us to do this successfully, we must have a sufficient cadre of persons who are able to prepare projects that will attract resources from our bilateral and multilateral friends abroad. Therefore, participants should take the Workshop seriously and make full use of the opportunity provided.

On the occasion of the

Brothers and sisters, we are endeavouring to rebuild the PSIP and seriously improve our ability to utilize in a timely and efficient manner resource given to us by donors. For us to be able to do so, we must: • better manage the project cycle process; • improve co-ordination of the PSIP with adequate budgetary controls; and • provide clear direction to the Public Sector Investment Program.

Opening of the Logical Framework Approach For Project Design Workshop

This Workshop is the second in a series of training activities aimed at improving the capacity through out the public sector to prepare and implement development projects.

Hon. V. Nazim Burke MINISTER'S NOTE Keynote Speech by the Minister for Finance

OAS Permanent Representative Mr. Terrance Craig, Permanent Secretaries, Ambassador designate to the OAS Gillian Bristol, Heads of Department, Specially Invited Guest, Resource Person from the OAS, Members of the Media, Workshop Participants, Ladies and Gentlemen. It is with great pleasure that I stand here today to declare open this important training Workshop. The Workshop is aimed at helping participants develop an understanding of the tools and methodologies used in preparation of projects for consideration by the OAS. At the end of the Workshop it is expected that participants would be able to utilize the tools and methodologies presented and discussed to develop the logical framework, which is considered critical to preparation of a proper project profile or larger project document.

Additionally, seven (7) persons have received training in various aspects of project management under a Caribbean Development Bank training program in Trinidad and Tobago between January to March of this year. It is my hope that participants would take the Workshop seriously by actively participating. The Workshop is led by a Senior Official within the OAS who has tremendous experience in the logical framework approach for project design and is Secretary to the highest project approval body in the OAS. In other words, the resource personnel provided sees and reads every project that comes to the OAS for consideration. We provide you with the best resource personnel and we hope that you make full use of her over the next two and a half days (2 ½) days. May God bless you and I wish you the very best over the next two and a half days (2 ½) days. I thank you.

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Statement by an IMF Staff Mission to Grenada dampened tourism receipts. Work on most foreign direct investment (FDI)-financed tourism projects has been put on hold, resulting in a marked slowing of construction activity. Real GDP is expected to contract by 0.7 percent in 2009 as the impact of the global downturn takes full effect, by lowering tourism receipts, FDI, and remittances. Inflation, after peaking at 8.3 percent in July 2008, fell to 5.2 percent at end-December 2008, associated with declining world fuel and food prices, and is expected to decline further in 2009. Reflecting the strong measures taken after the new government took office in July 2008, the authorities have made significant progress with their economic programme, including a sizeable improvement in the fiscal balance. The mission welcomed the government's success in bringing down the large stock of unpaid claims (domestic arrears). However, performance on the primary Hon. Minister Nazim Burke, Ms. Catherine Pattillo and Staff of the IMF and Ministry of Finance at Press Conference fiscal balance appears to have fallen slightly short of target, reflecting significant but less than Ms. Catherine Pattillo, head of an International Monetary Fund full progress in improving the control of capital expenditure and (IMF) Staff Mission to Grenada, issued the following statement lags in the passthrough of lower world fuel prices. In this regard, in St. George's on March 24, 2009: we welcome recent efforts by the government to amend the petrol tax law to permit adjustment of fuel prices every 4 weeks. “An IMF mission visited Grenada during March 16-25 to Given the impact of the global slowdown on Grenada's conduct discussions for the third review of the government's economy, the authorities have reprioritized the capital home-grown economic program that is supported by the IMF's expenditure programme for 2009 to provide the greatest Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF). The mission stimulus to economic activity, and have started to undertake had a constructive dialogue with Prime Minister Tillman well-targeted spending to protect vulnerable groups. A set of Thomas, Finance Minister Nazim Burke, Permanent Secretary priority projects is being selected and the public assistance Timothy Antoine and other senior government officials, and program will be expanded. The mission supports the representatives of public enterprises and the private sector. Staff authorities' efforts to facilitate major private investment from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Eastern projects that would help stimulate economic activity. Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) participated. Discussions focussed on recent economic developments, fiscal The mission agreed with the government on the importance of a performance, progress with the government's economic and more focused fiscal programme in 2009 to address the adverse structural reform agenda, and a policy framework for the effects of the global economic slowdown. Given Grenada's remainder of 2009 taking into account the deteriorating global high public debt burden, which constrains the ability to respond environment. In this connection, the authorities have requested to exogenous shocks, placing debt firmly on a downward path an augmentation of access under the PRGF, leading to a higher must remain the priority, particularly through determined disbursement, which will be considered by the IMF's Executive efforts at fiscal consolidation. The mission welcomed the Board. planned introduction of the VAT on February 1, 2010, which “Economic growth has decelerated sharply due to the global economic slowdown. Real GDP is estimated to have grown by around 0.3 percent in 2008 as weakened global demand

will lay the foundation for a broader tax base that will enhance revenues. Following the completion of the tax amnesty, the authorities plan appropriately to enhance the use of tax enforcement measures. On the expenditure side, the main Continues on pg. 5

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Continued from pg. 4

challenges are a prudent public sector wage policy, implementing strictly the refocused capital expenditure programme, and rationalizing social programmes for better targeted spending to protect vulnerable groups. Furthermore, the establishment of a Waste Reduction Unit and Public Procurement Authority will facilitate improvement in the efficiency of government spending. The authorities have also made some progress with structural reforms to support improved economic management, and promote a foundation for broad-based growth. A Debt Management Unit was established in the Ministry of Finance in January 2009 and it is expected to improve the effectiveness of and develop a strategy for debt management. The new draft Investment Act is in the final stages of review, which will provide a transparent and level regime for domestic and foreign investors and replace tax holidays with investment allowances. The authorities are also implementing a customs reform plan, developing an action plan to improve Grenada's Doing Business Indicators, and are completing the Country Poverty Assessment, with support from the CDB. On the latter, the government intends to use the findings to strengthen its strategy to reduce poverty and improve social indicators.

“On the issue of Capital Bank International Ltd., the authorities petitioned the High Court for liquidation in November 2008, following consultation with the ECCB, pending legal issues have delayed the resolution of the bank. “Overall, the government has made significant efforts to strengthen implementation of the economic and structural reform programme supported by the PRGF arrangement. The mission welcomed the authorities' commitment to addressing the challenges of the adverse external environment, and to strong and sound economic and fiscal management. IMF staff will continue to work closely with the authorities to assist them in such efforts, including through technical assistance, and supporting the government's efforts to mobilize donor support. Upon return to Washington, the IMF mission will prepare the necessary documentation for the IMF Executive Board to consider Grenada's request to complete the third review. “The mission thanks the Grenadian government officials for their close cooperation and looks forward to a continued constructive dialogue on the economic challenges facing Grenada.”

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JOINT STATEMENT FROM THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE AND THE GRENADA AUTHORITY FOR THE REGULATION OF FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS (GARFIN) In an effort to address this issue and to bolster public confidence, we wish to advise that Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and Member States of the ECCU have agreed to establish a “Liquidity Support Fund” which would provide additional liquidity to the financial sector in the ECCU. In relation to British American Insurance Company, the initial contributions toward the Fund would be comprised as follows:

Hon. Minister Nazim Burke (c), P.S. Timothy Antoine (l) and Angus Smith Executive Director of GARFIN (r) at Press Conference

Tuesday, April 14, 2009, St. George's: After weeks of close collaboration with Governments and regulators of the Eastern Caribbean, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and Grenada, culminating in a meeting in Antigua on April 02, 2009, the Ministry of Finance and GARFIN are pleased to update the public on efforts to protect depositors and investors of CLICO and British American in Grenada. This collaborative approach is consistent with the statement of Prime Minister Thomas after the special meeting in Barbados on March 05, 2009 when he indicated that this is a regional issue that requires a regional solution. Under the Chairmanship of Dr. the Hon. Ralph E. Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, a meeting was convened in Antigua on April 02, 2009 to further consider a regional solution to the CLICO and British American issue. In attendance were: the Prime Ministers of Barbados and Dominica, Chief Minister of Montserrat, Ministers of Finance and other officials from the Ministries of Finance of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU), Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago, along with Governors of the Central Banks of Barbados, ECCB, Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago, the Secretary General of CARICOM, Insurance Regulators of the ECCU and Guyana and representatives of the OECS Secretariat. The Establishment of a Liquidity Support Fund The Government of Grenada and GARFIN are keenly aware that some policyholders of British American have experienced delays with payments on their matured policies.

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1. The Government of Trinidad and Tobago through the CARICOM Petroleum Fund – US $50 million; 2. The Government of Barbados – US $5 million; 3. ECCU Governments and ECCB facilities – US $10 million; 4. Regional and International Organizations – US $15 million.

Plan for CLICO policies The Government of Barbados has advised of plans for the Insurance Corporation of Barbados to purchase CLICO International Life (Barbados). The CLICO International Life entities in the ECCU are branches of CLICO International Life (Barbados). The member Governments of the ECCU intend to give full support to this initiative. It is our expectation that this transaction will provide the requisite liquidity to ensure that CLICO Grenada is able to continue to meet all its obligations. However, some patience is needed until the purchase agreement is finalized. Sale of Executive Flexible Premium Annuity Stopped The business model of offering high interest rates has contributed to the current difficulties experienced by the CL Financial Group. This model has failed and cannot be allowed to continue. The public is hereby advised that GARFIN has sought and received written confirmation from British American and CLICO that they are no longer selling the Executive Flexible Premium Annuity (EFPA) product. The public is hereby informed that the sale of this product is not authorized by GARFIN and they should not purchase it. If any person is approached by anyone to buy this product, the person approached should notify GARFIN immediately. In respect of existing EFPA policies, GARFIN is writing to both companies requesting that they reduce the interest rates of these

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policies to normal commercial rates on the anniversary date of these policies. Commitment to maintain CLICO and British American as Going Concerns The meeting in Antigua considered mechanisms for cooperation among the Member States of Barbados, the ECCU and Trinidad and Tobago and agreed on a strategy which would maintain the viability of British American and CLICO in the ECCU in order to safeguard the interests of policyholders of these institutions. This strategy includes the establishment of a Liquidity Support Fund and the likely restructuring of the operations of British American. In this regard, countries present recognized the need to maintain British American in the Bahamas, under which the British American branches in the ECCU fall, as a going concern and agreed to communicate with the Prime Minister of the Bahamas on this matter. As regards CLICO, the purchase by the Insurance Corporation of Barbados is expected to ensure its continued existence as a going concern. The concerns of Guyana with CLICO Bahamas were also acknowledged.

Patience and Support of the Policyholders Needed Given the current efforts underway to resolve this major issue, the patience and cooperation of all policyholders is needed in the following areas: 1.

2.

3.

Avoid seeking early surrenders and early withdrawals as such demands do not help the current situation. Priority will have to be given to policies which have matured; Understand that the high rates currently offered will not continue and will most likely be reduced at the anniversary date of their policies; and Consider renewing their policies when they mature to ease the liquidity situation.

With the establishment of the Liquidity Support Fund, the other plans being explored for the long term viability of both companies, and the cooperation of the public, we believe that the interests of policyholders of British American and CLICO should be protected. We intend to keep policyholders and the public informed on this very important matter. Continued Regional Cooperation The meeting endorsed the continued cooperation among insurance regulators in CARICOM to ensure the continued stability of the financial sector.

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GRENADA GETS IMPROVED CREDIT WORTHINESS RATING Prime Minister Hon. Tillman Thomas has welcomed the news that Grenada has jumped 10 places in the Institutional Investor's March 2009 country credit rating report.

Finance Minister, Nazim Burke was cautiously excited, suggesting that while the news is good, it marks the start of a process designed to restore Grenada's ability to access international financing and manage its own debt, which spiraled almost out of control, within the last eight years.

The semi-annual credit worthiness report, conducted every six months by the respected Institutional Investor Magazine moved Grenada from 116th, where it was ranked in September 2008, to 106th in the world community of nations.

The Finance Minister said the rating, along with the recent pronouncements of the IMF shows there is growing international confidence in the new atmosphere of responsible economic management in St. George's.

“This shows that the steps we took to ensure proper management of the country are working. We will continue to work towards a strong economy that will benefit from the rebirth of our productive sectors and stands to gain even further, when the world rebounds from this economic crisis,” the Prime Minister, who is in Trinidad for the fifth Summit of the Americas, said Friday.

“This shows that this government's programme of financial management is beginning to catch the eyes of the international community. This is a positive development that we are pleased about. We are committed to working with the international community to move this rating even further by managing our debt, while creating jobs for our people and developing our country,” Mr. Burke said.

The report comes amidst the global economic downturn and the Grenada governments attempts to stimulate the economy with the recently announced 16M stimulus, which saw support for job creation, infrastructural development and investments in the Agricultural sector.

The rating is even more significant as all the major economies of the world are performing negatively, with the United States falling by five points, as it struggles to implement its own economic stimulus package.

The news comes on the heels of the findings of the latest review of the International Monetary Fund, which applauded Grenada's economic management and fiscal performance.

In the case of CARICOM countries, the Bahamas improved ten places from 51 to 41, Guyana moved 15 places from 126 to 111, Trinidad and Tobago improved by one place from 47 to 46, Barbados moved up 12 places from 61 to 49 while the credit rating of Belize and Jamaica fell from 119 to 132 and 91 to 99 respectively.

TAX Amnesty Ends The Tax Amnesty which came into being on November 17, 2008 came to an end on April 30, 2009, after having been extended for an extra month by the Prime Minister, Hon. Tillman Thomas, as part of the Government's Stimulus Package. The Amnesty was instituted by Government as an opportunity for taxpayers in arrears to pay off their taxes, up to December 31, 2007, void of all interests and penalties. In other words, taxpayers in arrears were given a 100% waiver on interest and penalties on their taxes in arrears. From all indications, the Amnesty was a success. A complete report will be given in the next edition.

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STATISTICAL RELEASE – APRIL 2009 The inflation rate in Grenada for the month of April 2009 was 1.62%. This rate is a significant reduction compared 8.67% in April 2008. The main reason for this reduction is a 25.7% decline in fuel and light. That said, there were increases in the following: • • • •

“Food including Non Alcoholic Drinks” “Personal Services” “Household Furniture and Furnishings” “Education”

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6.5%; 5.2%; 4.12%; and 4.4%

Government is committed to do all in its power to combat the cost of living, especially as it relates to food prices.

FINANCIAL Tip Understand Opportunity Costs Opportunity cost is defined as the cost of pursuing one alternative versus another. For example, if you were going to spend $500 on a new bike, the opportunity cost would be that you would not be able to buy anything else with or invest that $500. For the purposes of financial planning, you should look at the cost versus the benefit of each decision you make. In this case, you could spend $500 on the bike or you could invest the same $500 in a savings account. In five years, the bike may be worth $25 and the $500 investment could be

T

worth $650 (including interest). The opportunity cost of buying a bike is the long-term benefit that you will receive if you did not buy the bike and invested it. Technically, the opportunity cost is not limited to the cost of investing the money, but also includes any other opportunity you could spend the money on (investing, buying something else, saving the money, etc). By carefully evaluating your alternatives and by weighing the opportunity cost of each decision, you can vastly increase your long-term wealth. Source: www.free-financial-advice.net.

he Minister of Finance, Planning, Economy, Energy, Foreign Trade & Cooperatives, Minister of State, Permanent Secretary, Management and Staff extend condolences to the family and friends of all those who have lost their loved ones recently. “Good men must die, but death cannot kill their names” God's Peace Be With Their Souls.

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Facts Fun &

Did U Know? !

That fuel prices/prices of petroleum products are now reviewed on a monthly basis and adjusted (changed accordingly) on the 18th of every month?

!

That VAT is scheduled to be implemented in Grenada on February 1st 2010?

!

That the Government of Grenada is currently engaging stakeholders in development of the Social Protocol?

Have a laugh...

A stockbroker was filling out a job application when he came to the question: "Have you ever been arrested?" He answered no to the question. The next question, intended for those who answered the preceding question with a yes, was "why?" Nevertheless, the stockbroker answered it "Never got caught." Saving money Mother had decided to trim her household budget wherever possible, so instead of having a dress dry-cleaned she washed it by hand. Proud of her savings, she boasted to my father, “Just think, Fred, we are five dollars richer because I washed this dress by hand”. “Good”, my dad quickly replied, “wash it again”!

Fun Facts

Quotes

!

According to an old English System of time units, a moment is one and a half minutes.

!

111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321

!

If you yelled for 8 years, 7 months and 6 days, you would have produced enough sound energy to heat one cup of coffee.

A person who never makes mistakes never makes anything – unknown Don't drown the man who taught you to swim unknown

Riddle !

There were two ducks in front of a duck and two ducks behind a duck, and one duck in the middle. How many ducks were there? Ans. 3

!

You pass me going up and I pass you going down. What time is it? Ans. 1 pass 1

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Caribbean Government Printers EASTERVAL 2009


IRD Easter in Dominica


FFinance inance STAFF DEVELOPMENT AND TRAINING Continued from pg. 15 Continued from pg. 16

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Ms. Jocelyn Paul, National Climate Change Focal Point, attended the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Technical Workshop on integrating practices, tools and systems for climate risk assessment and management and disaster risk reduction strategies into national policies and programmes, in Havana Cuba from March 10 – 12, 2009. The Workshop was held in collaboration with the Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction and hosted the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment of Cuba, through its Environmental Agency. The objective of the workshop was to facilitate the identification of successful examples of integrating climate risk assessment and management, and disaster risk reduction strategies into national policies and programmes. Mr. Rickie Morain, Project Officer, attended the Specialized Project Manage Module in Social Analysis and Participatory Project Development Workshop, in Trinidad and Tobago, from March 16 – 27, 2009. The Workshop was organized by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and Bradford Centre for International Development (BDID) of the University of

Mr. Rickie Morain

Bradford. The emphasis of the programme was on the quality of the project design and the efficiency of its execution. It covered the requirements for effective management of the entire project cycle in a series of discrete modules and variety of technical modules. Ms. Jocelyn Paul, National Climate Change Focal Point, and Mr. Leon Charles, Chairman, Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), Climate Change Negotiating

Team, attended the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) (Climate Change Talks 2009) in Bonn, Germany, from March 29 – April 8, 2009. The main objective of the meeting was to finalize a comprehensive global agreement to tackle climate change by the end of December 2009 and to enable the full, effective and sustained implementation of the Convention on Climate Change through long term cooperative action now and beyond 2012. Ms. Esther Clarkson, Accounting Officer of the EDF/Support Services Unit, and Ms. Helen Roden, Project Officer of the EDF/Support Services Unit, participated in a Workshop on Project Management in ACP Countries and EDF 9 Contractual and Financial Procedures in Barbados, from March 9 - 13, 2009. The training was conducted by a consultancy firm from the Netherlands and was aimed at: • Improving knowledge on EDF 9 contractual and financial procedures; • Providing a general overview of the management of Programme Estimates (PE); • Developing a better understanding of the implementation procedures, and the roles and responsibilities of the different actors involved in the implementation of PE; • Developing a better understanding of the importance and hierarchy of legal texts and reference materials; • Developing a better understanding regarding findings of the relevant information in the legal text and reference materials; and • Demonstrating the benefit of the correct use of EDF procedures. Mr. Junior Mahon, Trade Officer in the Ministry of Finance, and Mr. Ferron Lowe, Policy Advisor in the Ministry of Agriculture, attended the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Consultation on the Implications of the World Trade Organization Negotiations from March 31 – April, 1, 2009 in Dominica. The objective of the consultation was to provide an opportunity for trade and agriculture officials from the OECS countries to review recent developments in the agriculture and non–agricultural market access negotiations, including efforts to agree on modalities for Continues on pg. 16

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Continued from pg. 15

agriculture and non-agricultural market access and services. The conclusions and recommendations of the meeting will inform and consolidate the OECS positions on agricultural and non-agricultural market access. Mr. Mervin Haynes, Chairman of the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) Steering Committee, and Mr. Isaac Bhagwan, Project Manager of the BNTF, attended the BNTF Annual Project Managers Meeting and Launch of the BNTF 6th programme in Jamaica, from March 15 – 21, 2009.

modalities for fisheries. The conclusions and recommendations of the meeting will inform and consolidate the OECS's positions on fisheries. Ms. Shanta Cox, Trade Officer in the Ministry of Finance, attended the EXPO 2010, in Shanghai, China and CARICOM First Preparatory meeting of National Coordinators, in Guyana from April 27 – 28, 2009.

At the meeting, the past year's programme performance was analysed and plans were made for the ensuing year. Member countries made presentations on their performance, highlighting their constraints, opportunities and lessons learnt. Members were also provided with training on key issues with particular emphasis on best practices. They also discussed/ clarified policy options as it relates to funding. Mr. Oliver Joseph, Permanent Secretary on Special Assignment to Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) matters, and Mr. Rohan Phillip, Solicitor General, represented Grenada at the Meeting of CARIFORUM Legal and Policy Officials on Institutional Matters and Dispute Settlement Under the EPA, in Barbados from March 26 – 27, 2009. This meeting was mandated by the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers as a matter of urgency to recommend draft rules of procedure to: • govern arbitration panels established to resolve disputes between Parties and the Code of Conduct Arbitrators; • recommend draft rules of procedure for the joint institutions established under the EPA; and • propose approaches to address a number of policy related issues to facilitate operation of the Joint Institutions and the dispute settlement mechanism under the EPA Agreement. Mr. Junior Mahon, Trade Officer in the Ministry of Finance, and Mr. Paul Phillip, Fisheries Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture, attended the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Consultation on the Implications of the World Trade Organization Negotiations for Fisheries from April 8–9, 2009 in Antigua. The main objective of the Consultation was to provide an opportunity for trade and fisheries officials from the OECS countries to review recent developments in fisheries negotiations, including efforts to agree on

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Ms. Shanta Cox

The meeting updated participants on progress made to date with respect to site development, cultural presentation, construction of pavillion, and the introduction of the financing proposal of the EXPO which is scheduled to take place in Shanghai, China in 2010. Ms. Esther Clarkson, Accounting Officer of the EDF/Support Services Unit, and Ms. Helen Roden, Project Officer of the EDF/Support Services Unit, participated in a training session on the 10th EDF Procedures and attended a one-day meeting on Pending Bilateral Matters in Barbados, from April 29 - 30, 2009. The training was conducted by a delegation of the European Commission Trainers and supported by personnel from the Finance and Contracts Section. Some of the objectives of the exercise were to afford participants the opportunity to: • get a comprehensive appreciation of the new dimensions being introduced by the 10th EDF which is the new envelope of funding provided by the European Union (EU); and • acquire the knowledge and technical skills of the 10th EDF procedures; and Mr. Matthew Simon, Energy Officer responsible for Information Systems at the Energy Unit of the Ministry of Finance, attended the CEIS follow up training on the use and maintenance of the Renewable Information Platform and the CIPORE Platform launch in Jamaica from April 23 – 24, 2009. Continues on pg. 17

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Continued from pg. 16

The training covered the creation and use of the Virtual Tours Feature; use of the Online Meeting Feature and other Communication Resources; Upload of content to the Statistical Databases; Use of the Projects Map Feature; Information Protocols and Accessibility Rights. As a result of this training, Grenada now has the capacity to use the Renewable Energy Information Platform to upload the relevant data to CEIS as agreed by member countries, as well as to be able to timely manipulate the website to showcase Grenada's achievements in the area of Energy (indigenous, alternative, renewable) and otherwise.

substances that can contribute to such which may be brought into the country through importation. The Workshop was facilitated by Mr. Gerard James of the Customs Division. Members of Staff from the Accountant General's Office, together with their counterparts of the Audit Department, participated in a one day training exercise in on the Public Accounts on Monday 20th April 2009 at the Ministry of Finance Conference. The Workshop was facilitated by the Director of Audit and other staff members from the Audit Department.

Customs Officers attended a National Workshop on the Control and Monitoring of Ozone Depleting Substances and Dependent Technologies for Customs Officers, on Wednesday 29th April, 2009, at the Ministry of Finance Conference Room. The session was organized by the

Public Officers at Training

Custom Officers at Training

United Nations Environment Programme, Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNEP/ROLAC) in collaboration with the Government of Grenada, Ministry of Finance, Planning, Energy, Foreign Trade and Co-operatives. The workshop sought to bring the officers up to speed with the latest information on the depletion of the Ozone Layer and the

Members of Staff attended a Public Workers Health Project Workshop, sponsored by the Ministry of Health, on Wednesday April 15th, 2009 at the Ministry of Finance Conference Room. The session formed part of the Ministry of Health's Health Education Project for Public Officers which is aimed at fostering a healthy, productive and sustainable public service workforce. The One Day Workshop included two sessions: one on Stress Management, which was facilitated by Mrs. Clara Bhola, and the other on the Impact of Health on Individuals/Organizations facilitated by Dr. Martin Francis.

Remember The Hurricane season is here... be prepared... Have a family disaster plan in place. “... the engine room of the Public Service...�

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What’s Been Happening

SPECIAL EMERGENCY MEETING A special emergency meeting was convened in Barbados on March 4, 2009, bringing together Prime Ministers and/or Ministers of Finance from Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and the OECS countries to discuss the recent developments in the financial sector and to agree on a regional strategy to manage the situation. Grenada's delegation at the meeting was made up of Prime Minister, Hon. Tillman Thomas; Minister of Finance, Hon. Nazim Burke; Permanent Secretary, Mr. Timothy Antoine; and Executive Director of GARFIN, Mr. Angus Smith.

GOOD REFRIGERATION PRACTICES FOR TECHNICIANS The National Ozone Unit (NOU), in the Energy Division, Ministry of Finance, Planning, Foreign Trade, Energy & Co-operatives in conjunction with the Grenada Refrigeration, Air-condition & Ventilating Association (GRAVA) conducted a very successful training exercise in Good Refrigeration Practices for technicians in the refrigeration and air-condition industry. This training was conducted on Saturday, March 7th, 2009 at the National Stadium. The training attracted a wide cross section of

The main objectives of the meeting were for the Governments: • To update each other on their efforts, to date, with regards to addressing the situation; • To agree on a common strategy for addressing the situation; and • To agree on approaches to strengthen the financial sector to protect the interest of policy holders, depositors and investors. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE SEMINAR The Grenada Authority for the Regulation of Financial Institutions (GARFIN) in conjunction with the Ministry of Finance and the Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre (CARTAC) hosted a Seminar on Corporate Governance-Legal Obligations, Duties and Responsibilities of Directors for Directors and Managers of Financial Institutions and Government Statutory Bodies operating in Grenada on March 5, 2009 at the Grenada Grand Beach Resort, Crown Ball Room.

Hon. Minister Sylvester Quarles handing out equipment

over sixty-five (65) technicians throughout Grenada. The technicians were trained in the use of ultra-modern state of the art equipment to be used in the recovery and recycling of refrigerants. Among the equipment that the technicians were trained to use were: recovery machines, refrigerant identifiers, electronic leak detectors, electronic scales and vacuum pumps. This training and equipment will assist

This seminar was considered very timely and significant since many of the Government Statutory Bodies have new Directors and Managers with the change in Administration. Some of the topics discussed included: • Legal Obligations of Directors; • Directors' Duties and Responsibilities; and • The Importance of Effective Internal & External Audits, among others. This seminar was consistent with Government's commitment to good governance.

Participants at Workshop

technicians in the prevention of purging or venting of refrigeration gases into the atmosphere which goes up to the stratosphere and damages the Ozone Layer. The lead Continues on pg. 19

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Continued from pg. 18

trainer was President of the Refrigeration Association, Mr. Michael Mitchell and he was assisted by other members of the executive of the association. This training is an integral component of Grenada's Terminal Phase-out Management Plan for CFC refrigerants under the Montreal Protocol which obligates the country to completely phase out these Ozone Depleting Substances by December 2009. According to Mr. Leslie Smith, Project Officer in the National Ozone Unit, “Grenada has being doing extremely well in the fight to protect the Ozone Layer”. Mr. Smith went on to say that “since 2006 Grenada has being reporting zero consumption of these Ozone Depleting Substances, three years ahead of the Montreal Protocol Schedule of 2009”. Following the training exercise, the Minister of State in the Ministry of Works, Physical Development, Public Utilities and the Environment handed out equipment on behalf of the Government of Grenada, to the tune of over EC $100,000.00 to technicians and institutions. Thirteen (13) centres have been established across the country where technicians who received the training can access this equipment to be used. Among the centres are: T.A. Marryshow Community College, NEWLO and the Department of Fisheries. Funding for the equipment was provided by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) IMF THIRD REVIEW MISSION A delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), headed by Ms. Catherine Pattillo, visited Grenada

of the banking sector, and representatives of the public and private sectors. Discussions focused on recent economic developments, including the global financial crisis, and Grenada's present fiscal performance, among other economic matters. Ms. Christine Dawson and Mr. Ronald James, representatives of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) respectively, also formed part of the review team. A joint communiqué between the Government of Grenada and the IMF was released at the end of the exercise and can be found on page 4. STANDARD AND POORS ANNUAL REVIEW

As part of its ongoing Credit Review, a team from Standard and Poor's visited Grenada in early March to conduct their annual review for reassessing Grenada's Sovereign Credit Rating. The team consisted of Ms. Olga Kalinina, Associate Director and Mr. Richard Francis, Director of Standard and Poor's. While here they met with various stakeholders including the Ministry of Finance; the leader of Her Majesty's Opposition; the Grenada Authority for the Regulation of Financial Institutions (GARFIN); the United States Embassy; representatives from the Board of Tourism, the Grenada Chamber of Industry and Commerce, and the Banking Sector. Credit ratings are usually awarded relative to other countries in the world. Standards and Poor's rates over 100 countries internationally. ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT WORKSHOP The Ministry of Finance, Trade and Export Promotion Division, in collaboration with Caribbean Export Development Agency hosted a Workshop on Implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement:

IMF Review Team

on Monday, March 16th, 2009, to conduct the Third Review of the IMF supported Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility Programme (PRGF). The Review, which was completed on March 25th, 2009, saw the delegation holding discussions with the Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance, the Permanent Secretary and other senior officials of the Ministry of Finance, officials from other Government Ministries and Departments, representatives

Participants at Workshop

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Continues from pg 19

Its impact on the Grenada Private Sector and the Role of the Caribbean Export Development Agency on Thursday 12th March, 2009 at the Coyaba Garden and Beach Resort. The Objectives of the Workshop were: • To present to the private sector and other economic operators in Grenada with an update on the status of EPA Implementation; • To give a brief overview of the provisions of the EPA Agreement (trade in goods); and • To explain the Role of Caribbean Export and to discuss how private sector firms can access its programmes.

This visit forms part of the Minister's outreach initiative to visit and interact with all staff of the Ministry. (See Pictures on Centre Page) REGIONAL NETWORK MEETING FOR OZONE OFFICERS OF THE ENGLISH SPEAKING CARIBBEAN The Government of Grenada, through the National Ozone Unit (NOU), Energy Division of the Ministry of Finance, together with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), hosted a Regional Network Meeting for Ozone Officers of the English-Speaking Caribbean, from Tuesday March 24th – Friday March 27th, 2009 at the Grenada Grand Beach Resort.

BUDGET IMPLEMENTATION EXERCISE On Thursday March 19, 2009, the Ministry of Finance held a Budget Implementation Session for Permanent Secretaries and Finance Officers of all Government Ministries and Departments at the Grenada National Stadium.

Hon. Minister Burke (c), and other members of the Head Table at Meeting

Permanent Secretaries and other Public Officers at Implementation Session

The main objectives of the Session were to: • Familiarize all concerned with the new legal framework governing public finances; and • Expedite the implementation of the key budget priorities. The Session included Presentations and Discussions on the Audit Act, the Public Finance Management Act, the 2009 Budget Implementation Process, and the PublicSector Investment Programme.

The main issues discussed at the meeting were: 1. Recent decisions of the Montreal Protocol, Multilateral Fund Executive Committee; 2. Training and capacity building for National Ozone Officers; 3. Compliance challenge of the Member States for meeting 100% phase-out of CFC by December 31st 2009; 4. Completion of ratification to the amendments to the Montreal Protocol; 5. Review and address challenges in Montreal Protocol Project Implementation;

MINISTER VISITS DISTRICT REVENUE OFFICES The Minister of Finance Hon. V. Nazim Burke, together with the Permanent Secretary and other senior officials of the Ministry of Finance, visited all District Revenue Offices (DROs) in Grenada on Friday March 20th, 2009. The Finance delegation was well received by the officers of the outer districts who took the opportunity to discuss various issues with the Minister and Permanent Secretary and come up with solutions to resolve some of the issues.

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Participants at Meeting

Continues on pg. 21


Continued from pg. 20

6. Management of Hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) for very low volume consuming countries with discussions on longer term alternative technologies; 7. Preparation of HCFC Country Programme Management Plan; 8. Regional public education and awareness activities for protection of the ozone layer. GRENADA RECEIVES VISIT FROM IFC Wednesday April 1st, 2009, the Government of Grenada, received a visit from Mr. Atul Mehta, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Director for Latin America and the Caribbean and Mr. Kirk Ifill, Resident Representative for the English-Speaking Caribbean.

MINISTER BURKE MEETS WITH MR. HEGEL GOUTIER, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, THE COURIER MAGAZINE – MAGAZINE OF AFRICACARIBBEAN-PACIFIC AND EUROPEAN UNION COOPERATION. Hon. V. Nazim Burke, Minister for Finance, met with Mr. Hegel Goutier, Editor-in-Chief of The Courier Magazine, on Tuesday April 14, 2009. This meeting formed part of a visit by the Editor who was gathering information on Grenada for a feature in Issue No. 11 of the Courier Magazine which will cover the period June - August 2009.

While in Grenada, Mr. Mehta and his team looked at potential private infrastructural investments in various sectors such as tourism, health, education, clean energy and agri-business. The IFC is a private sector arm of the World Bank Group. Through its mandate, IFC fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments. It helps companies and financial institutions in emerging markets create jobs, generate tax revenues, improve corporate governance and environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities. MINISTER BURKE ATTENDS REGIONAL MEETING IN ANTIGUA On Thursday April 2, 2009, Minister of Finance, Hon. V. Nazim Burke, attended a regional meeting in Antigua to discuss the CLICO-British American Insurance Company and other current financial matters. The meeting brought together the Ministers of Finance of Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and the OECS-ECCB countries, their Insurance Regulators, Governors of the Central Banks of Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and the ECCB, the Director General of the OECS and Secretary General of CARICOM. Discussions focused mainly on the decision made by the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to make available up US$50 million from the CARICOM Petroleum Facility to meet certain liabilities regarding the policy holders, investors, and depositors of the affected companies in the OECS-ECCB member-countries. Minister Burke was accompanied by the Executive Director of GARFIN.

Hon. Minister Burke and Editor-in-Chief of Courier Magazine

During the meeting Minister Burke highlighted: • The general state of finances in the country stating that it is an unprecedented and difficult situation; • The measures Government is putting in place to cushion the current economic situation as highlighted by the Prime Minister in his recent presentation of the 'Stimulus Package'; • The Repeal of the National Reconstruction Levy (NRL), putting more disposable income into the hands of Grenadians, although it meant Government giving up US$10 million; • The main choices made for development in the country, in particular; • Urgent short term measures to keep income and employment sustainable; • Long term economic management to build a platform for sustained growth. This includes putting measures in place to position Grenada to take advantage of the eventual 'turn around' in the financial crisis; • The creation of a Debt Management Unit, Waste Reduction Unit, and Technical and Economic Cooperation Unit to help improve the finances of the country; • The passage of the Acts in Parliament aimed at improving accountability and transparency in Government; Continues on pg. 22

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Continued from pg. 21

Grenada's relationship with Cuba, Venezuela, and China.

The Courier Magazine is an internationally distributed magazine highlighting issues relating to AfricanCaribbean – Pacific States and European Union Cooperation (ACP-EU). It is an important source of information on cooperation between African, Caribbean and Pacific Countries and the European Union.

entities as well as representatives from the private sector, non-governmental organizations, and international agencies in Grenada. The Workshop was being facilitated by Ms. Yacsire Cutler, a senior official within the OAS who has tremendous experience in the logical framework

The feature on Grenada would provide an overview of the country and focus particularly on the development cooperation with the European Union. While in Grenada, Mr. Goutier also met with the Honourable Prime Minister, other Government Officials, the Leader of the Opposition, members of civil society, media personnel and other key stakeholders. He also visited selected project sites. The Grenada Government is pleased that Grenada has been chosen for the feature being mindful of the international exposure and potential benefits that it can bring. LOGICAL FRAMEWORK APPROACH FOR PROJECT DESIGN The Ministry of Finance, in collaboration with the organization of the American States (OAS) hosted a 2½ day Workshop on the Logical Framework Approach for Project Design, at the Grenada National Stadium, St. George's, from Wednesday April 22, 2009.

Participants at Workshop

approach for project design and inspects all projects that are presented to the OAS for consideration. As a result of the Workshop, participants are now expected to utilize the tools and methodologies acquired in the preparation of project proposals, especially those being submitted to the OAS for consideration. CARIBBEAN GOVERNMENT PRINTERS EASTERVAL TOUR 2009 The Government Printery hosted the Caribbean Government Printers Easterval Tour from April 9th – 13th, 2009. The Easterval Tour is an annual event, at Easter, which brings Caribbean Government Printers together at one location, to interact socially and professionally, creating bonds of friendship and linkages for functional cooperation among the respective Government Printeries.

Head Table at Workshop

The main aim of this Workshop was to help participants develop an understanding of the tools and methodologies used in preparation of projects for consideration by the OAS. Participants for the Workshop were made up of representatives of the public sector and other Government

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As said by the Minister of Finance, under whose portfolio the Government Printery falls, in his welcome message in the festival's commemorative magazine: “An event such as this is an excellent opportunity to interact socially and professionally with regional counterparts; to meet and share experiences and ideas; and to build a network that can be tapped for various reasons.” This year marked the 19th anniversary of this event and the third occasion on which Grenada acted as the host.

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Continued from pg. 22

The five (5) days of activities included an Official Opening Ceremony on Thursday April 8, a Sports Day on Friday April 9, a Caribbean Night on Saturday April 10, and an Island Tour on Monday April 13. (See Pictures on Page 11) IRD REGIONAL GAMES A delegation of twenty (20) persons represented the Inland Revenue Department Sports and Social Club at the Annual Inland Revenue Regional Games held in Easter of this year in Dominica. The Games is a mixture of sporting and social events with one of its main aims being the further integration of our Caribbean Community. Most persons did not get a chance to fully savour the delights of the Nature Isle because of travel difficulties which resulted in them missing both the Opening Night on Holy Thursday and the Closing Night on Easter Sunday. However, that did not dampen them as they got the chance to rekindle acquaintances. On the sporting side, the team participated in football and fun sports. The highlight of the Games was the visit to Screw's Spa where many of them took the opportunity to enjoy a dip in the very warm sulphur water. The 2010 Games will be held next Easter in Antigua. The Club will be notifying staffers of the Ministry of their preparations and wants to take this early opportunity to invite anyone who may be interested in being part of the delegation for next year's event. The club solicits everyone's support in their fundraising activities. (See Pictures on page 14) MINISTER OF FINANCE VISITS DOCKS AND STATISTICS On Friday April 24, 2009, Minister of Finance, Hon. V. Nazim Burke, continued on his outreach initiative, visiting the staff at the Custom Baggage Shed and CARICOM Shed and Staff of the Central Statistical Office on the Carenage. During his visit, the Minister took the opportunity to observe the operations at the docks and spoke to the officers on duty, hearing their challenges and suggestions for improvement. He also took the time to speak with some of the port users, traffickers and other customers who were present at the time. At the Central Statistical Office, Minister Burke continued to interact with staff, getting a feel for their various duties and responsibilities and hearing of the issues that affect them in the conduct of their duties. Minister Burke promised to work with the Management Team to address the issues that were raised at both locations.

The Minister was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary and other senior members of staff. (See Pictures on Centre page) HOTLINE FOR REPORTING MISUSE OF GOVERNMENT RESOURCES The Government of Grenada now has in place a “Hotline” for members of the public to report the misuse (abuse) of Government vehicles and other Government resources.

The number is (473) 440-5883. It may be recalled that during the 2009 Budget Speech, Finance Minister, Hon. V. Nazim Burke announced plans to establish a hotline as part of Government's Waste Reduction Hotline. Members of the general public are encouraged to call the number to report incidences of misuse of Government vehicles and other forms of abuse of Government resources. ESTABLISHMENT OF PROCUREMENT OFFICE A Public Procurement Office is now in place at the Ministry of Finance, Planning, Economy, Foreign Trade, Energy and Cooperatives. In this regard, Mr. Dennis Clarke has been appointed as the Chief Procurement Officer. He assumed this position in February 2009. Mr. Clarke's responsibilities include the establishment of the Public Procurement Authority which is one of the key provisions of the Public Procurement Contract Administration Act. This Act was passed in Parliament to improve public procurement practices and transparency in public expenditure. APPEAL COMMISIONERS TAKE UP DUTIES On Thursday April 30th 2009, the new Appeal Commissioners under the Income Tax Act were oriented at the Ministry of Finance. The Commissioners are: Ms. Deborah St. Bernard – Attorney (Chairman) Mr. Cecil Edwards – former Comptroller of Inland Revenue Mr. Fitzroy O'Neale – former Banker Mr. Joseph Bain – former Accountant General Mr. Argar Alexander – former Cabinet Secretary The Secretary is Ms. Rhona Andrews. In speaking at the session, Minister of Finance, Hon. Nazim Burke told the Commissioners that their appointment is important to “ensure natural justice by Continues on pg. 24

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• • • •

Hon. Minister Burke and other staff members at orientation

providing a forum for persons with objections to their tax assessments by the Comptroller of the Inland Revenue Department.”

Appeal Commissioners

Under the Income Tax Act, any taxpayer who receives an assessment can object, in writing, to the Comptroller of the Inland Revenue Department within thirty (30) days of receiving the assessment. If the taxpayer is not satisfied with the Comptroller's ruling, he or she can submit an appeal to the Appeal Commissioners.

Providing support to Government's negotiations within bilateral, regional and international fora; Collaborating with the Director of Trade on all matters relating to Grenada's trade policy and traderelated issues; Coordinating on critical trade policy issues with the OECS, CARICOM, ACP and other developing country groupings; Advising on a coordinated approach to Government's national trade policy interests across the several arenas of negotiations such as CSME, FTAA, WTO, EU – ACP, CARICOM; and Serving as Chairperson and managing the Secretariat of the National Trade Policy Coordinating Committee (NTPCC) in order to facilitate the efficient exchange of information for policy setting and consensus building between meetings of the NTPCC.

Ms. Francis brings extensive experience to the position having last served as the Legal/Trade Specialist at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus where she lectured on International Trade Law with special focus on the WTO, Regional Trade Agreements Negotiations. In addition Ms. Francis was also the Lead Consultant with the Shridath Ramphal Centre for International Trade Law, Policy and Services at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill, Barbados, where she completed a Review and Evaluation of the CARIFORUM – EU Economic Partnership Agreement: Implications for Barbados.

The Appeal Commissioners will also receive objections under the Value Added Tax (VAT) Tax Bill currently before Parliament. The reconstitution of the Tribunal comes as Government moves to strengthen Inland Revenue Department's ability to effectively enforce all the tax laws following the expiration of the amnesty on April 30, 2009. Ms. Allyson Francis

TRADE COUNSEL NOW IN PLACE AT MINISTRY OF FINANCE Ms. Allyson Francis has been appointed as the Trade Counsel to the Government of Grenada, a position within the Trade and Export Development Division of the Ministry of Finance, Planning, Economy, Foreign Trade, Energy and Cooperatives. Her responsibilities include:

Ms. Francis is no stranger to the Government of Grenada having worked as Trade Counsel from 2000 – 2004. During that stint, she advised Government on legal matters pertaining to the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) and the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). The Ministry takes this opportunity to welcome back Ms. Francis.

Ministry of Finance, Planning, Economy, Energy, Foreign Trade & Cooperatives Financial Complex, Carenage, St. George’s Tel.: 440-2731-34, 435-0057; Fax: 440-4115; Website: www.gov.gd; Email: finance@gov.gd Contact: Petra Joseph, Editor-in-Chief, 440-2731, ext.: 1108/435-0057

Designed and printed by Government Printery


Inside Finance - Volume 5, Issue 2, March - April 2009