Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 25th 2014 Contents A19
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Robert Riley s appointment as a
director on the board of Massy Hold-
ings Limited came after a rigorous
recruitment and nomination process,
the group s corporate secretary and
legal advisor, Wendy Kerry told the
Riley, Group head of Safety and Oper-
ations Risk, Culture and Capability at
London-based BP plc, was appointed
to the board on December 17.
"The Massy Group has an Energy
and Industrial Gases Business Unit. Mr.
Riley s experience in the energy sector
is therefore highly relevant to our busi-
ness. Further, he is an attorney-at-law
and an executive with a breadth and
depth of business experience, both local
and international. He also has much
significant experience at the board level,"
Riley has been with BP for more than
two decades and was at one time chief
executive and chairman in it s T&T oper-
ations. In his current position at BP he
is based overseas. Asked about that issue,
Kerry said Riley will be resident in T&T
but added: "The Massy Group spans
various geographies and has had board
members who reside in different juris-
dictions. This has always worked well
for various reasons."
Massy looks to Riley's energy expertise
Hugh Howard, president of the
American Chamber of Commerce
T&T, is urging citizens not to splurge
for Christmas and Carnival as next
year will be difficult for the coun-
"I am not being alarmist but I am
being prudent. This goes for whether
it is the Government, business or pri-
vate individuals," he told the T&T
Howard does not expect the price
of oil to go back up any time soon
and warned citizens to tighten their
belts or else T&T will have to face the
"bitter pill" of the International Mon-
etary Fund (IMF).
"If people just keep spending and
not saving then the country will face
a structural adjustment like the 1980s
when we went to the IMF. We cannot
say oil at US$40 is good and just
keep spending," he said, adding that
Government must play a lead role in
countering a recession.
"There must be an adjustment to
the expenditure. We cannot hope that
there will be magic and the trend of
falling energy prices will be reversed,"
Vivek Charran, president of the San
Juan Business Chamber, said he
expects to see slower spending for the
first half of 2015.
"Next year will be an election year
and my experience shows that people
are usually cautious around this time.
I have been in this area for the past
17 years and I have seen two elections,
so that has been my experience," he
Charran expects consumer spending
to pick up after the elections, when-
ever it is held.
He said he hopes the infrastructure
improves in San Juan in 2015.
"The market has already been com-
pleted in San Juan but we need to see
additional infrastructure built," he
Charran is also hoping there will
be solid economic growth next year.
"We want to have a safer 2015 and
also see people have more jobs. Once
this happens people will come to our
businesses and buy. This is better for
everyone," he said.
Daphne Bartlett, president of the
San Fernando Business Association,
said for 2015, the local business com-
munity in retailing must get involved
in e-tailing as an increasing number
of persons are shopping online.
"We want to see businesses in a
different light. We need to have our
traditional stores online. E-tailing
would see us grow as everyone is now
online. This is the reality now and
local retailers must head in this direc-
tion," she said.
She forecasts that the oil prices will
not rise in 2015 and advises the Gov-
ernment not to dip in the Heritage
and Stabilisation Fund (HSF).
"What the Government should do
is have a smaller budget and leave the
HSF for more leaner times," she said.
Bartlett also wants to see the Gov-
ernment focus on developing produc-
tive employment instead of makeshift
employment which she said hurts the
"Retailers and manufacturers can-
not find employment because people
are cutting grass for three hours at
the side of the road. That is not how
we solve poverty," she said.
caution on spending
A manager, right, talks to a client at an empty car dealership in Moscow,
Russia. Following the collapse of the Russian currency, the ruble,
Russian flocked to buy cars and durable goods before the prices rise
higher. AP PHOTO
"If people just keep spending
and not saving then the
country will face a structural
adjustment like the 1980s
when we went to the IMF."
HUGH HOWARD, AMERICAN
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE T&T
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