Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 15th 2013 Contents A19
• Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
BELGRADE, Serbia---A Serbian tycoon
pleaded not guilty on Thursday to charges of
embezzlement and tax evasion at the start of
a trial that the government sees as an
important step in efforts to curb corruption.
Miroslav Miskovic, once considered as one
of the most influential people in Serbia with
close political ties, faces up to ten years in
prison if convicted by Serbia's anti-corruption
court. Also on trial is Miskovic's son, Marko,
and nine others.
The indictment alleges that the group
siphoned off millions of dollars from a
privatized road construction company in
2005-2010. They are also accused of evading
Miskovic, one of the richest people in
impoverished Serbia, is the owner of Delta
Holding, one of the biggest companies in the
The company has retail, real estate,
insurance and agriculture businesses in Serbia
and the rest of the Balkans.
When Miskovic was arrested in December,
government officials said it demonstrated
that no one was untouchable in the anti-
corruption sweep. Serbia must fight graft to
move closer to EU membership. (AP)
Serbia's top tycoon on trial for embezzlement
T&T must raise its procure-
ment procedures to international
standards to attract greater
inflows of foreign direct invest-
ment (FDI) into the economy,
Bank (IDB) Representative
Michelle Cross Fenty advised
"We would like to see a mech-
anism for review and a mech-
anism for complaints and disputes
in T&T s procurement legislation,"
"We are hoping that once the
procurement legislation is com-
pleted that it can be on par with
international best practices. Pro-
curement legislation will be able
to boost foreign direct investment
and improve the doing business,
metrics of T&T," Cross Fenty told
participants at an IDB workshop
on Doing Business With the IDB,
under IDB s Funded Project at
the Trinidad Hilton and Confer-
ence Centre, St Ann s.
The IDB s loan and grant port-
folio in T&T is half a billion US
dollars she said.
"It was only last Friday that
we successfully negotiated a loan
of US $120 million with the Gov-
ernment of T&T for a flood alle-
viation and drainage control pro-
gramme," she said.
Cross Fenty said said the IDB
had identified "gaps" in T&T s
current procurement legislation.
"We would like to see the
applicability of the rules and reg-
ulations to all public entities,
including state owned enterpris-
es," she explained, adding that if
T&T and other countries do not
come up to IDB s standards in
their procurement process it is
the right of the IDB to withhold
"When a country is going
through a procurement process,
there are certain stages within a
process that the IDB would
require, and if the Government
does not follow directions then
the IDB has the legal right not to
make that payment. So there are
built in mechanisms," she said.
Cross Fenty said up to 30,000
contracts are generated annually
from IDB loans and grants.
She said: "We have estimated
that is a lot of money. These
would be to private contractors
that provide services and goods
to the Government ...under
whatever loan they undertake,"
Fenty said T&T should position
itself to take advantage of business
opportunities that have been cre-
ated in the market.
"Doing business with the IDB,
under IDB funded projects sup-
ports additional jobs here at home
and promotes long term sustain-
able growth and development of
the country," she said.
Heads of some of the largest public and private
financial institutions in the Caribbean gathered in
Grenada over the past days, to meet with Prime
Minister Dr Keith Mitchell; Assistant Secretary
General of the Organization of American States
(OAS), Albert Ramdin and international financial
experts retained by the Bertelsmann Foundation to
critically examine the debt situation facing several
Among the stakeholders attending the meeting
were chairman of Guardian Holdings and Neal and
Massey Ltd, Arthur Lok Jack; chairman of Republic
Bank Ltd, Barbados National Bank and the National
Bank of Industry and Commerce, Ronald Harford;
representatives of Sagicor; the T&T Manufacturers
Association; RBC Caribbean; Ansa Merchant Bank;
Governor of the Central Bank Jwala Rambarran;
KPMG; the International Institute of Finance; the
IADB; the Kiel Institute for the World Economy;
Investor SA Casa de Bolsa and several others.
Discussions focused on key areas including debt
restructuring and sustainable growth strategies, pub-
lic-private partnerships, international debt negotiation
and other related issues.
Mitchell, the meeting was convened at a crucial
time for Grenada, since the nation "is at a crossroads
in terms of development."
Extending his appreciation toRamdin for bringing
together top regional and international stakeholders,
Prime Minister Mitchell welcomed the initiative in
Grenada, saying "practical solutions are needed for
the fundamental problems confronting the country."
Describing the private meeting as "solution ori-
ented," Ramdin said Caribbean countries make up
a significant percentage of the OAS membership,
and issues affecting the sub-region should be con-
sidered a priority.
IDB warning on
procurement Major T&T presence at
Caribbean debt talks
Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) representative Michelle Cross
Fenty, left, speaks with IDB Procurement Señor Procurement Specialist
Roy Parahoo and IDB Procurement Specialist Shirley Sinclair during a
workshop on Doing Business under IDB Funded Projects at the Trinidad
Hilton yesterday. PHOTO: MARCUS GONZALES
Links Archive November 14th 2013 November 16th 2013 Navigation Previous Page Next Page