Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 29th 2017 Contents tobagotoday.co.tt June 28 - 2017
a solution now
Members of the Tobago Hotel and Tourism Association
(THATA) have sent out a challenge to the Tobago House
of Assembly asking them to prove that tourism is Tobago's
major economic driver.
President of the Association Chris James questioned the
THA's words after hearing the current administration's
allocation and plans for the tourism sector in its 2017-2018
"...This Administration recognises that the Tourism
sector will continue to be a major driver of economic activ-
ity on the island," Secretary of Finance and the Economy,
Joel Jack, read as he presented Fiscal 2018 at the Assem-
bly's Legislature Building, Jerningham Street, Scarborough.
The current administration's plans for the tourism sector
includes the, "...Enhancement of the marketing programme
under the Tourism Rolling Plan at an estimated cost of
$100M" and "Assistance to small properties in the tourism
industry at a cost of $15M." Tourism was allocated the fourth
largest share of the budget - $355.4.
The budget placed emphasis on heath and allocated the
Division of Health, Wellness and Family Development the
largest portion of the budget - $794.1M.
Emphasis was also placed on Divisions of Infrastructure,
Quarries and the Environment -$539.5 and Education,
Innovation and Energy- $498.1m.
Referring to Finance Secretary's comment on the role of
tourism in Tobago's economy James said, "The budgetary
allocations do not reflect that."
"What we need to do is sit and create a roadmap of where
we need to go so that we can get this industry back up and
running. The industry is on its knees and struggling to
James said the sector was able to survive the global eco-
nomic fallout of 2008 as the domestic tourism sector kept
it afloat. He noted that recent local developments have
created several new challenges. "The sea bridge problem
has put an end to domestic tourism which we were very
heavily dependent on."
He said all the divisions of the THA should work towards
maximising Tobago's tourism sector potential.
Turning his attention to the administration's proposed
initiatives James said he was especially pleased by the San-
Of the project, Secretary Jack said: "The Sandals project
could undoubtedly be a game changer for Tobago. This
project will assist in addressing three critical problems
affecting our tourism sector: airlift, a shortage of high-qual-
ity rooms and the marketing of destination Tobago."
Jack added: "As a result, the Assembly will continue to
work with our partners in central government to ensure
Tobago derives optimum benefit from this project."
The tourism association president said members of the
association welcome the benefits the Sandals project will
bring to Tobago.
"The majority of the members of the Hoteliers Associ-
ation are in favour of Sandals but what we are not in favour
of is the lack of consultations and that is a problem."
According to the THATA president, stakeholders cannot
wait until Sandals opens as they are presently in a desper-
ate situation. He said the sector is "on its knees" at the
moment and in need of some urgent relief.
-Tourism Association president
Recurrent Estimates and Highlights- Fiscal 2018
The Recurrent Estimates for Fiscal 2018 totals $3.2B.
This is disaggregated as follows:
Personnel Expenditure - - $ 858.3M
Goods and Services - - $ 1.2B
Minor Equipment Purchases - - $ 127.2M
Transfers and Subsidies - - $ 1.05B
Assembly Legislature - - $ 28.0M
Office of the Chief Secretary - - $227.5M
Finance and the Economy - - $184.0M
Tourism, Culture and Transportation - - $355.4M
Education, Innovation and Energy - - $498.1M
Community Development, Enterprise Development and
Labour - - $110.9M
Infrastructure, Quarries and the Environment - - $539.5M
Food Production Forestry and Fisheries - - $324.9M
Health, Wellness and Family Development - - $794.1M
Settlements, Urban Renewal and Public Utilities - - $35.3M
Sport and Youth Affairs - - $99.8M. 6.4
Youth Development Programme $3M
School Feeding Programme $50M
Agricultural Incentive Programme $4M
Information Technology Centre $20M
Studley Park Enterprise Limited $26M
Assistance to Sports Tourism Organisations $2.6M.
DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME EXPENDITURE
ESTIMATES AND HIGHLIGHTS
Development Programme for fiscal 2018
amount to $1.71B
The Development Programmes Estimates are disaggregat-
ed as follows:
Pre-Investment - - $5M
Productive Sectors - - $20M
Economic Infrastructure - - $738
Social Infrastructure - - $652M
Multi-sectoral and Other Services - - $294M.
To assist economic diversification and the development of
the private sector on the island, our development programme
estimates provides support for:
The Enterprise Development Company of Tobago (E-IDCOT)
The Scarborough Esplanade Phase II $15M
Enterprise Development $8M
Enterprise Development Grant Programme $9M
The Business Incubator Programme $6M
Venture Capital Equity Fund Limited $2M. 6.9
A 26-old-labourer of Hart Lane, Government House
Road, has been charged with the possession of mari-
juana for the purpose of trafficking.
Jelani Melville was arrested following a raid and search
exercise of several drug blocks in the Scarborough district
conducted between 11 am and 1 pm last Wednesday.
The exercise was coordinated by Senior Supt Joanne
Archie and spearheaded by Cpl Stewart and other officers
from the Divisional Task Force.
Four packets of compressed marijuana popularly known
, weighing 2.28 kilograms and with a street value
of $75,000, was recovered.
Melville appeared in the Scarborough Magistrates' Court
on Thursday, where he pleaded not guilty to the charge.
He was placed on $150,000 bail.
WCpl George laid the charge.
Melville is scheduled to reappear in court on July 20.
$75,000 bail for labourer
on drug charge
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