Gaskin highlights the importance of agricultural sector

first_imgWith the oil and gas industry paving the way for Guyana’s development, Business Minister Dominic Gaskin has reiterated the importance of other sectors in the country’s economy, primarily the agricultural and agro-processing sectors.This announcement was made at the launch of Marketplace Uncapped, an exhibition aimed at promoting the products of local manufacturers in Guyana.During his address, Minister Gaskin stressed on the significance of understanding how greatly the agricultural sector affected the country and the opportunities that were possible from Guyana’s growing agro-processing industry.“It’s important to note that our government sees the agricultural and agro-processing sector as priority sectors, because we too understand that long after the oil has been extracted and there’s no more left, we still need to eat and feed others,” he stated.Some of the locally-manufactured productsCurrently, the Guyana Marketing Corporation (GMC) is working with small-scale manufacturers to highlight their businesses. While the use of quality ingredients is a requirement, packaging also plays an important role in gaining the customers’ attention. As such, Gaskin encouraged local producers to have their items featured at exhibitions to improve in these areas.The Minister revealed, “Our job is not to criticise those whose packaging is not that attractive, but to help them appreciate the need to not only compete on the basis of your ingredients, but on how well you package and how attractive your product is – when it is lined up on the supermarket shelf next to imported products and other products.”“We’re also trying to help smaller producers who don’t yet understand the benefit of packaging, ensuring that their goods are properly packaged and labelled,” he said.While adding that employment was created for farmers by small business ventures, Gaskin also emphasised the fact that Guyana’s import bill has been reduced, stating: “All these things are good for farmers, because we know that we import these foods. Every year, there is a high import bill that we have to face and if we can produce them locally and process them locally and make them available for local consumption, then we’re ahead of the game.”During his remarks, Minister Gaskin also touched on the fact that Guyana no longer exported catfish to the United States of America (USA). This is in light of the non-compliance with the United States Food Safety Modernisation Act, which he thinks should be fulfilled urgently. The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) is collaborating with the University of Hawaii on educational programmes, which will assist with compliance on these requirements.“It doesn’t help us to sit down and attributing blame to each other. What we need to figure out: what needs to be done, what are the requirements, how can we help each other to achieve these requirements,” he stated.Presently, the Agriculture Ministry has embarked on a sustainable agricultural plan, which is financed through a US$15 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank and is expected to impact the agricultural sector in a tremendous way. Spices such as turmeric and black pepper are also being cultivated in various areas in Region One (Barima-Waini). Additionally, the Business Ministry is working on two incubators, in Berbice and Lethem, which will assist small operators.While these are all systems that were put in place to diversify and develop the country’s agro-processing industry, the Business Minister, in his final comments, highlighted that for the sector to emerge victorious, consumers must patronise these businesses and buy the products, which are no less of good quality than imported products.last_img read more

IT’S RAINING MEDALS FOR DONEGAL ATHLETES AT NATIONAL INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS

first_imgIT has been a superb weekend for Donegal athletes at the National Indoor Championships in Athlone.Mark English with a blistering last 200 metres won the national indoor 800m title this afternoon in 1.48.44 holding off the challenge of his Letterkenny AC clubmate Darren Mc Brearty.Mary Mc Loone,  Tirconnail AC took the triple title @12-58 m having gained a silver in the long jump yesterday. And Ann Marie McGlynn from Lifford Atheltic Club took silver in 3,000mThere was a huge crowd for the event – many attracted by Fionnuala Britton who turned on the style in confident victory in the final of the women’s 1500m.In the final of the men’s 1500m John Coghlan, son of World Championship gold medallist Eamonn, took the gold in a time of 3:47.43.  ********Donegaldaily.com – Donegal’s No1 News & Sports Website – more than 30,000 Visitors Every DayFollow the leader on:https://twitter.com/DonegalDaily IT’S RAINING MEDALS FOR DONEGAL ATHLETES AT NATIONAL INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS was last modified: February 18th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:IT’S RAINING MEDALS FOR DONEGAL ATHLETES AT NATIONAL INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPSlast_img read more

South Africa’s economy not declining but it faces difficulties

first_imgIn the current challenging economic climate, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS), delivered to Parliament on 26 October 2016, focused on social development and transformation. The biggest challenge South Africa faces, Gordhan said, is slow global growth and its effect on investment and trade in South Africa.This is one of the reasons for a R23-billion shortfall in projected revenue, a deficit that will have to be recouped through raised tax rates. The minister conceded that he faced a challenge of implementing measures that raised government revenues without inhibiting investment.Gordhan’s solution is to stabilise and consolidate national debt and prioritise capital investment.Over the next three years, R900-billion will be invested in infrastructure development with an emphasis on the telecommunications, energy and transport sectors.Additional funding will be channelled into health services, tertiary education and social programmes.Minister Gordhan stressed that government priorities remained:Progress in providing housing, clean water and sanitation for all.Creating equal access to health care.Accelerating job creation and small enterprise development.Expanding access to further education and advancing the country’s technological capabilities.South Africa’s economy faces difficulties, but the economy is not in decline, Gordhan stressed.To take advantage of the opportunities for growth, government would prioritise the financing of education. “We are especially mindful of the need to expand access to post-school education opportunities,” Gordhan said, but added “this is not enough: our progress rests on improvements in the entire education system.”In addition to a R16-billion boost to the higher education budget, a further R9- billion is earmarked for the National Student Financial Aid Scheme. The effect of fee increases will be bankrolled by an additional R8-billion to aid households with an income under R600 000. These measures recognise that graduates do contribute, through taxes and loan repayments, to the next generation of students.All of these objectives, the minister explained, had to be met without leaving a legacy of debt for future generations. These aims, summed up as social transformation and inclusive economic growth, would ensure opportunities and the chance of a better life for all South Africans.Economic growth would ensure a stable and vibrant democratic South Africa.By prioritising where the government can best spend revenue and, more importantly, cut unnecessary and wasteful government expenditure, the ministry will be able to increase social grants. This modest increase – an additional R10 a month – has been necessitated by rising food costs.Other social programme spending includes:An expansion in government HIV/Aids programmes, which now reach 3.5 million people.Increases in the National Health Insurance’s conditional grant to continue the contracting of general practitioners and bring professional capacity into the School Health Programme.New conditional grant for employment of social workers.Extended child support grant for orphans.Funding for 39 000 Funza Lushaka bursaries for prospective teachers.Minister Gordhan’s statement also covered economic development, especially growth that encouraged the building of a more inclusive economy. Over the medium term the minister has proposed:R45-billion to promote industrialisation, economic transformation and sustainable resource management.An agri-parks initiative to help small farmers with production, marketing and training.A reassignment of housing funds to speed up investment in rental housing units and planning of catalytic projects in large towns and cities.Establishment of the National Radioactive Waste Disposal Institute.Funding for the N2 Wild Coast road, the Moloto road and improved maintenance of both national and provincial roads.High-speed internet access in government buildings.“Fifty-five million South Africans want to see and experience real change in their lives, and continuous progress,” Gordhan emphasised.The minister challenged all South Africans to embrace a collective and concerted effort to find solutions for sustainable growth and eradicating poverty. If South Africans want the promise of the National Development Plan to be realised, Gordhan said, the country needed to embrace stable and sustainable public finances, as well as economic reforms and a transparent monetary policy.There are promising “green shoots” in the economy that can only be nurtured if the finance ministry’s holistic package of measures to grow the economy are enacted. “No one measure will work,” Gordhan said, “our approach is to mobilise efforts across many fronts, and to recognise a diversity of contributions in an open and multi-faceted development framework.”Gordhan’s MTBPS once again reaffirms an approach to building a national consensus on development and transformation. The minister set out the aims of his budget:The objective is inclusive growth.Limits would be set on government debt and expenditure while the administration would encourage public and private sector investment.The government-endorsed nine-point development plan would guide policy.Broadening inclusive participation, growth and development will require multi- ministerial policy initiatives.“All of us have expectations of government, of the economy and indeed of our political system. We expect delivery,” Gordhan concluded. “We expect change for the better. We expect progress in South Africa. Above all, we expect a better future for our children – particularly through education.”SouthAfrica.info reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using SouthAfrica.info materiallast_img read more

“Butterfly Garden…” GC1HA96 GEOCACHE OF THE WEEK August 9, 2011

first_imgButterfly Garden at the Changi AirportGeocaching.com users Orangefizzy & Buntoro worked to receive permission from the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore to hide this cache. Butterfly Garden @ Changi Airport T3 Transit (GC1HA96) is placed inside the Changi Airport.The geocache delivers adventurers to a micro-ecosystem. You hear the crash of a cascading waterfall, see more than 200 species of tropical plants, and watch more than 1000 free-roaming butterflies flutter from flower to flower.You can experience the tropical oasis, and log the difficulty one, terrain one geocache, between international flights. Some geocachers even use the cache to build anticipation for their own travel through the Changi Airport.Butterfly Garden at the Changi AirportOne cacher who logged a “Found it!” wrote, “Since we booked our flight to Bali half a year ago, I watched this cache nearly once a week. And today was the day and I found this great cache together with my beautiful wife. A really perfect place to relax, watch the butterflies and find a cache.” More than 500 geocachers have logged a smiley on the cache at Geocaching.com.Butterfly Garden GeocacheWhile the cache has been approved by the landowner the cache page still advises discretion. It reads, “Workmen and contractors probably do not know the existence of the cache and are unlikely to understand it.  So please be mindful to maintain stealth at all times.”Continue your exploration of some of the most engaging geocaches from around the world. Explore all the Geocaches of the Week on the Latitude 47 blog or view the Bookmark List on Geocaching.com. Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedA new country souvenir for Singapore!December 12, 2016In “News”…wo hab Ich den Cache denn nochmal hingelegt??? (GC1DZ17) – GEOCACHE OF THE WEEK – December 27, 2012December 26, 2012In “Community”Queens Stair case GC2CXZQ GEOCACHE OF THE WEEK – March 12, 2012March 12, 2012In “Community”last_img read more