Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 12th 2015 Contents FEBRUARY 2015 • WEEK TWO www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
COMMENTARY | BG15
The economy, growth
exchange and monetary
policy were some of the
topics discussed by
Jwala Rambarran, Gov-
ernor of the Central
Bank of T&T, at the
Chamber of Commerce s first quarterly
breakfast meeting on February 5.
At the session titled "Economic Outlook
2015" Governor Rambarran informed the
business community of the potential impact
of international developments on a small
open economy such as ours and policies
that Central Bank will implement to guide
the economy through these conditions.
Very early in his address, the Governor
Airports Authority of Trinidad and Tobago ('the Authority')
invites suitably qualified firms and individuals to submit
proposals for leasing and developing land at the Piarco
AeroPark for a Home Furnishings retail centre. This is an
attractive opportunity to operate in one of the most
high-traffic areas in Trinidad and Tobago.
The Piarco AeroPark is a mixed use business park just north
of the Piarco International Airport in Trinidad and Tobago.
The Piarco AeroPark is the first aerotropolis or airport city in
the Caribbean. It will contain zones for various activities
Copies of the RFP can be obtained from December 30th
2014 between 8:00a.m. and 4:00p.m. at the Cashier's
Booth, Airports Authority Administration Centre, Piarco
International Airport, South Terminal, Golden Grove Road,
Piarco, Trinidad and Tobago upon payment of a non
refundable fee of US$200.00 plus VAT.
A Pre-Proposal Conference and Facility Tour will take
place at 10:00a.m. on January 28th 2015 at the following
Proposers and their representatives are encouraged to attend
the Facility Tour to acquaint themselves with the conditions
therein which may influence their proposals.
The deadline for submission of proposals is February 27th
2015 at 2:00p.m. AST. Late submissions will not be
The Authority does not bind itself to accept the lowest or any
Questions or requests for further information should be
The Secretary Tenders Committee
The subject line should read
Development of a
HOME FURNISHINGS RETAIL CENTRE
at the Piarco AeroPark
TrINIDAD AND TOBAGO
offered much needed clarification about the Central
Bank s role in managing and guiding the economy s
accounts, particularly in its interaction with the rest
of the world.
This was especially evident in the Governor s expla-
nation of how the Central Bank operates and the
rationale behind policy decisions such as how the
bank has treated with the country s current foreign
Rambarran stated that the Central Bank does not
supply 100 per cent of the economy s foreign exchange
but rather meets the shortfall between demand and
supply in the system. He further explained that there
were 12 authorised foreign exchange dealers since
2007, two of which did not receive any allocation
previously, but now receive one per cent each. This
inclusion saw a foreign exchange allocation system
of 95.25 per cent banking and 4.75 per cent non-
banking change to 95 per cent banking and five per
cent non-banking, therefore resulting in a 0.25 per
cent reduction in the Banking Institution allocation
being transferred to the non-banking institutions,
which in his opinion could not disrupt the system
The Governor also indicated that due to global
energy market conditions and expected supply dis-
ruptions in the local energy sector in 2015, the Central
Bank anticipates a widening of the gap between the
demand and supply of foreign exchange in the system.
The Bank therefore expects to be making larger and
more frequent injections to reduce the potential
strains on the business community.
Despite these expected conditions the Central Bank
still anticipates a continued increase in foreign reserves
due to current account surpluses and a healthy balance
of payments position. This should reassure the country
and the economy that based on our current balance
of payments position there is no need to approach
the International Monetary Fund.
On another note, consumer credit card payment
continues to increase in T&T, reaching approximately
US$1 billion in the last two years thereby increasing
the demand from the system and the CBTT. In an
effort to preserve reserves the Central Bank has to
analyse the demand, giving rise to the question, are
we injecting foreign exchange to finance productive
investments or simply enabling consumerism?
As a free market economy the Central Bank can
only influence the economy and the credit system
through specific tools but to influence consumer s
and their use of credit T&T needs to develop a more
financially savvy economy.
The Central Bank estimates growth to be 1.5 per
cent in 2015 up from 0.8 per cent in 2014 despite
current energy prices. This is followed by estimated
growth in the energy and the non-energy sectors by
one per cent and two percent respectively, which
represents the best performance in growth for the
energy sector in the last three years. This estimated
growth in the economy should also be considered
with other local conditions, such as, the record low
unemployment rate of three percent as the country
approaches full capacity and increases in Headline
Inflation driven by food prices.
These conditions, the Governor indicated, raises
expectation for increases in wages and salaries within
the economy especially has the private sector is cur-
rently reporting shortages of skilled labour and would
want to attract the best workers.
Additionally, in addressing the global shortfall in
oil prices Governor Rambarran indicated that for the
next two to three years the Central Bank anticipates
energy prices to remain low and most likely will not
return to pre-2003 prices.
He continued by saying T&T previously has faced
these conditions and in the Central Bank s view this
is a cyclical event. This, in the chamber s view empha-
sises the importance of continued fiscal responsibility
to ensure a more sustainable future.
T&T's outlook for 2015
T&T Chamber of
Industry and Commerce
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