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Cabinet Meeting Update
This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
Governor Peter Beckingham chaired the 23rd meeting of the Cabinet on Wednesday 30 October 2013 at the Hilly Ewing Building, Providenciales.
At this meeting Cabinet:
Received a presentation from Peter Hayes, Director of the Overseas Territories Directorate. Mr Hayes thanked Cabinet for receiving him, and reaffirmed the UK’s continued commitment to assist TCI to develop its economy. He also gave an overview of what the Joint Ministerial Council to be held in London in November would focus on, and looked forward to the Premier’s attendance.
- Was pleased with the better than anticipated financial position of TCIG for the period July to September 2013, as submitted in the Second Quarter Financial Report from the Accountant General. For the second quarter of FY 2013-14 the Consolidated Fund recorded a deficit of $1.4m, which was better than anticipated, however it was noted that there will be additional challenges as the year progresses through unavoidable additional costs and implementation delays in some of the already-announced tax increases. It was agreed that the report would be passed to the House of Assembly for discussion and released to the public.
- Agreed with the decisions of the Procurement Board to award contracts for the construction of restroom blocks at Ianthe Pratt Primary School, Providenciales, and Clement Howell High School, Providenciales.
- Noted the draft Young Adult Empowerment Policy and approved in principle the objectives proposed. A formal policy document will be created, and care will be taken to ensure it is consistent with existing legislation and initiatives. The policy has a number of goals it hopes to achieve by 2020, including: A significant increase in the percentage of Young TC Islanders employed in a managerial position; a significant increase in the percentage of Young Turks and Caicos Islanders owning a first home by age 35; a significant increase in the percentage of Young Turks and Caicos Islanders owning a business; a significant Increase in the percentage of young Turks and Caicos Islanders accessing tertiary education degree level programmes; a significant increase the percentage of young Turks and Caicos Islanders with a certified employable skill. The Young Adult Empowerment policy will be facilitated by many policy initiatives and incentives focused on empowering people between the age of 18-35 years and expanding the middle socioeconomic class. The empowerment policy will be informed by information obtained from a youth empowerment survey, to be conducted by the National Epidemiology Research Unit in collaboration with the SPPD and Ministry of Education, and available census information.
- Agreed to amend the Customs Ordinance to address the issue of incorrect pre-entry of imported goods into the customs clearance system. By automating the entry system it is anticipated there will be a clearer audit trail for customs inspectors to follow as well as an increase in the rates of revenue collection.
- In line with the MoU with Third Turtle Resort, agreed to grant approval for the Chief Gaming Inspector to proceed with the processing of Casino licenses for the Third Turtle Resort and Casino. As this application is for a casino that will be situated within a hotel, it is consistent with the exclusive license as a stand-alone casino on Providenciales currently held by the Casa Blanca.
- Agreed to the establishment of a Public-Private Sector Forum. The body will be made up of representatives from the private sector and from across TCIG (including the Ministry of Finance, AG’s Chambers, the Governor’s Office and the Opposition), and will provide a forum for consultation, discussion and advice on matters concerning inward investment and development. The body will be consultative in nature, and any proposals it produces will be progressed through normal government channels as appropriate.
- Reviewed and agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Bankers’ Association that sets out the terms on which a community based, small business development program will be established. Based on highly successful schemes operating in North America and the Caribbean, the not-for-profit programme will provide valuable support to those looking to establish small to medium enterprises in TCI.
- Heard a presentation from Apex Ltd on the current status of the West Caicos development. Cabinet looked forward to receiving finalized plans early in the New Year.
Further information on these matters will be provided by Ministers in due course