The Business Corner
On May 6th 2019, Finance Minister Colm Imbert, gave a positive outlook for the economy in his mid-year budget review, presented in parliament. Our specially assembled panel, Director of Tax Matters at Auditing firm KPMG, Gillian Wolfe-O’Neil, Agriculture entrepreneur, Alpha Sennon (the founder of WhyFarms), and international Economics expert, professor Anthony Gonzales, of the University of the West Indies, at St. Augustine, weigh in.
They say the overall situation is not as grim as made out by some, but that the government needs to resolve the issue of Value Added Tax refunds to businesses, advance the country’s diversification thrust, and create the environment for young people to flourish.
Much of the ability of companies to survive changing market preferences or an economic downturn depends on how well they plan for those scenarios. The editor of the ‘Journal of Business Venturing’, American professor, Andrew Corbett, a feature speaker at early May’s Distinguished Leadership and Innovation Conference 2019, in Port of Spain, says those in charge and the mindset adopted are key.
We get “live” excerpts from the mid-year Budget review, as delivered in Parliament, by Finance Minister, Colm Imbert.
Nikesha Ramey, Business Development Manager of the digital printing solutions firm, Printree, which launched in 2018, talks about surviving those tricky first 12 months of operations.
And finally, Jeane Warner (of the vegan snacks entity, Nu’th Lifestyle), and Human Resources professionals, Crisha Bowen and Shelly-Ann Cooper, emphasize the importance of health and getting one’s life in order.
The Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU) in late April, marked 30 years of existence with a 5-day conference in Port of Spain, which brought together stakeholders, Government Ministers, budding entrepreneurs and the tech giants, Google, Facebook and Amazon. Its Secretary-General, Bernadette Lewis, and telecommunications specialist, Nigel Cassimire, give details of the ‘futurescape’, an initiative launched at the event to advance the region’s collective digital and economic transformation.
We focus on the career of photographer, Damion Joachim, who developed his skills, and a name for himself at Caribbean Premier League cricket matches and art exhibitions, before opening his own studio. And finally, associate economics professor at Andrews University, in Michigan, U.S.A., Dr. Lucile Sabas, gives some perspectives on ‘entrepreneurial financing’
The President of the Co-operative Credit Union League, and Vice-President of the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Unions, Joseph Remy, says the movement has done what’s necessary to comply with requirements of the International Financial Reporting Standards 9, which came into effect in January 2018, but challenges remain.
In more recorded moments from the ‘Business Development Seminar’ at the University of the Southern Caribbean, on April 9, the C.E.O. of the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Gabriel Faria, examines ‘the role of entrepreneurship and trade in Caribbean development’.
Finally, Afiya Douglas and Ariane Mohan, tell the stories of their respective business endeavours, in cookies and desserts (‘Caphe Tia’) and Scuba Diving/Island Tours (‘Scuba DDI’).