Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedNo fatal accidents involving strays recorded in 2013; Stray Catching Programme creditedJanuary 9, 2014In “Crime”Region 2 to launch stray campaignMarch 9, 2019In “latest news”Police Corporal in hospital after collision with stray cow, calfNovember 22, 2016In “latest news” The Public Security Ministry wishes to inform the general public and animal owners that the waiver on the impounding of stray animals has ended.“The impounding of stray animals will re-commence from (today) August 9, 2017. These impounding exercises will begin in all communities across Guyana,” the Department of Public Information announced.The Ministry also appealed to both cattle owners and all road users to make every effort to ensure that our roads and communities are safe.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedGuyana begins work to appear before ICJFebruary 6, 2018In “latest news”Caribbean Foreign Ministers pledge support to Guyana’s sovereigntyMay 11, 2018In “latest news”Border controversy: Following Venezuela’s refusal ICJ to now determine whether it has jurisdiction- GreenidgeJune 28, 2018In “latest news” Guyana welcomes the decision of the Secretary-General (SG) of the United Nations (UN) to refer the controversy between Guyana and Venezuela to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).Foreign Affairs Minister, Carl GreenidgeThis is according to Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge, who in a released statement said that “Guyana has always held the view that the ICJ is the appropriate forum for the peaceful and definitive settlement of the controversy, and is pleased that that view has prevailed under the process developed by both Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and Secretary General Antonio Guterres.”Moreover, he posited that Guyana “will not allow factors extraneous to the controversy to influence its referral to the Court, but it will continue the advancement of peaceful relations with Venezuela whose people are the brothers and sisters of Guyanese. In this context, Guyana acknowledges the Secretary-General’s suggestions for the immediate future.”“That Guyana has stood firm against Venezuela’s attempt to re-open a territorial boundary settled and recognised for half a century before its independence, and done so despite the manifest unequal strengths between the two countries, is to our national credit. Guyana, as one of the world’s small developing countries, is pleased that its reliance on the rule of law internationally has been the underpinning of its national sovereignty” said Greendige.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedSkeldon Hospital sit-in: RHO blames miscommunication for drug shortageApril 10, 2018In “Health”WCD health centres facing drug shortages – sourceJanuary 4, 2019In “latest news”Doctors, nurses stage sit-in over deplorable state of Diamond hospitalSeptember 6, 2017In “latest news” In light of there being reports of drug shortages at the Skeldon Hospital in Region Six, physicians attached to the Accident and Emergency (A&E) department of the health facility on Monday staged a “sit in” and refused to see patients.According to the medical practitioners- most of whom are attached to the A&E Unit of the health facility- it would prove to be useless to even attempt to carry out their duties as the hospital has no medication, gloves or other basic medical supplies.A limping patient, Rajindra Shivnarine of Number 75 Village, Berbice, who was denied the hospital’s service and told this online publication that he was told to come back another time.Furthermore, Executive member of the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU), Ram Mangru visited the location after he learnt of the sit-in.However, he noted while the staff of the hospital have shown their willingness to continue protesting until solutions are met, the GPSU, he said, could not advise them on a way forward unless it holds discussions with Regional Officials.Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) Permanent Secretary, Collette Adams and other Ministry officials say they “are mystified by Monday’s industrial action by the Skeldon Hospital physicians” since according to Adams, “the hospital received supplies from the Materials Management Unit (MMU) last Thursday.”“She said further, no hospital authority or the doctors complained to the Ministry or the Union about shortage of supplies at the A&E,” a press statement from the Ministry explained.The ‘sit-in’ didn’t disrupt operations in other parts of the hospital according to Alex Foster, the point person for the Public Health Ministry in Region Six.Foster said A&E physicians were upset that critical supplies were unavailable to treat their patients forcing them to take industrial action.Nevertheless, it was disclosed that a high-level meeting is planned for tomorrow (Tuesday) following today’s strike action.Furthermore, the MOPH release noted that “medical supplies are expected to be transported to the Skeldon Hospital on Tuesday morning.”
Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry President, Mr. Deodat Indar (second from right) presents award for excellence to Chief Executive Officer of GO-Invest, Mr. Owen Verwey. Looking on are GO-Invest’s Deputy CEO, Ms. Natalia Seepersaud (left) and Executive Director at GCCI Mr. Richard Rambarran.The Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest) has won an award for excellence in Public Service from the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) for effectively facilitating the work of the business community by providing the highest standard of service.GCCI President Deodat Indar presented the award to GO-Invest’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Owen Verwey at a small ceremony at the Chamber’s boardroom on January 7, 2019, in the presence of the Agency’s Deputy CEO, Ms. Natalia Seepersaud and other invited guests.Giving reasons why the GCCI decided to award the Agency, Indar said, “Under the young leadership of the GO-Invest, headed by Mr. Verwey and … Ms. Seepersaud, we find that Go-Invest has been more outward looking. They are present at all of the incoming trade missions, they are always there [serving the business community].”Indar said GCCI appreciates GO-Invest’s informative presentations on Guyana’s trade agreements with various countries, and the Agency’s precise explanations of the benefits of such agreements. He noted that the two entities had worked well together to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships between international and local businesses.The GCCI head commended GO-Invest for organising many key trade missions to Guyana enabling the local business community to form lucrative connections with international counterparts. He highlighted recent trade missions from Canada and Trinidad and Tobago as fruitful engagements that allowed Guyanese businesses to partner with foreign companies and boost local commerce.GO-Invest’s CEO accepted the award and pledged that he and his team will continue to work hard to raise the Agency’s profile and reach higher levels of capacity and reliability. He indicated that GCCI’s recognition of the Agency’s strong core values and business-promotion culture will encourage investors to feel comfortable going to GO-Invest for guidance.Verwey pointed out that, while much of the focus on business in Guyana has been on the emerging oil and gas sector, GO-Invest continues to play a major role in attracting investment in other areas, particularly agriculture, pointing to two successful agricultural trade missions from Brazil last year.He said GO-Invest intends to build on these successes, and the Agency’s hope is that the benefits from large-scale ventures would filter down meaningfully to smaller local producers in the agro-processing sector, as well as other areas of business that make up the supply chain in the agro-producing industry.The CEO added that GO-Invest will continue to do outreaches to the members of the local business community, in and outside Georgetown, and has reached out to nearly all the Administrative Regions in Guyana via agricultural and commercial expos, and at other events like the Lethem Town Week.Expressing appreciation for the award, Verwey said, “We are grateful for the relationships we have with our customers and the trust they place in us. They have a lot of options these days, so it is not something we take for granted. The Agency will continue its hard work this year.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedMOU signed between Guyana and Cuba to strengthen trade relationsNovember 2, 2017In “Business”Go-Invest claims no negative impact on investmentMarch 12, 2019In “Business”Desmond Sears new Private Sector Commission ChairmanJune 21, 2018In “Business”
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedMore shake-ups loom at GRAFebruary 4, 2019In “Business”Over $5B collected during GRA’s tax amnestySeptember 27, 2018In “latest news”GRA going after businesses that cheat VAT systemAugust 10, 2016In “Business” Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA), Commissioner-General, Godfrey StatiaThe Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) on Friday announced that it collected $199Billion in revenues for 2018 as compared to the $171Billion the authority received the previous year (2017).This disclosure was made by GRA’s Commissioner-General, Godfrey Statia during a press briefing at the authority’s Camp Street office. Statia said that the GRA had only budgeted to collect $181M in revenues for that year.Of the total amount received in 2018; internal revenue was $88M; Custom and Trade Administration $23M; and Value Added Tax (VAT) and Excise Tax, $199M.According to a DPI release, the Commissioner-General also disclosed that the sum of $15Billion in arrears was collected of which $7Billion resulted from the tax amnesty. He added that the revenues earned from court cases won by GRA amount to just over $5Billion and for cases that are currently before the courts, in excess of $15Billion is owed.Regarding revenues owed to GRA, Statia added that the Guyana Stores Limited (GSL) had made a sizeable down payment and the two parties are currently in the process of negotiating how the remainder will be paid. The GRA had won a $4Billion case against Guyana Stores at Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) in March 2018.He emphasised, “GRA is not in the business of driving people out of business, we try to work along with the taxpayer for them to pay their taxes. Taking away assets from the taxpayer is the last resort. It’s not Guyana Stores alone; they are many other taxpayers that have lost their cases. So, we have to work along with them so that we can collect rather than seize.”On the issue of tax evaders, the Commissioner-General said that GRA continues to work with those persons to pay up their taxes. The excess of debt for taxes which are in arrears and would also include taxes in objection is about $40Billion, he said.“Evaders are a continual process and would also include penalties because under Sections 10 and 11 (of the constitution) GRA could fine them as much as 100 per cent of what they have understated and, in some cases, we can take them to court, and they can go to prison for about six months.”Statia explained that Tax evasion could include VAT, customs and income tax.Asked whether there were any revenues from the oil and gas sector, the Commissioner-General said that there had been no revenues from this sector yet, however, revenues were garnered through withholding taxes and additional PAYE (pay as you earn) from employees within the industry.
Pluton Resources, the emerging iron ore producer behind the development of an innovative drilling platform for some of the toughest terrain in Australia, has been given this year’s Golden Gecko Award for Environmental Excellence. The Australian made Universal Drilling Platform (UDP) was developed and patented by Pluton to provide a safe, stable, low footprint option for diamond drilling programs on remote and rugged exploration prospects. It is currently being used in Pluton’s Irvine Island exploration program in The Kimberley.The UDP is a modular platform, which can be transported to an exploration site by helicopter and assembled by hand in less than a day. When fully assembled the platform has a ground disturbance of less than 5 m², much less than traditional exploration equipment. Hydraulically adjustable legs mean that it can be used on uneven and sloping terrain, without the need for excavation or earth moving machinery. The platform does not require the building of tracks or use of heavy vehicles, and once in place can be used as a helipad, further reducing ground disturbance.Pluton’s Managing Director, Tony Schoer, says the company attributes the success of the project to its employees and contractors and the traditional owners of Irvine Island, the Mayala people. “Minimising the land disturbance during exploration can make an important difference to the industry’s footprint,” he said. “A few months after drilling from the platforms, it is almost impossible to tell where we’ve been. We believe it’s part of the new paradigm in mining. Increasingly, exploration and mining companies are finding new ways to operate in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.”He said Mayala exploration teams have been trained to assemble the platforms and support exploration. They have been a key part of the company’s success. As part of a broader environmental management strategy, Pluton has adapted accommodation technology used in the Antarctic to build green exploration sites in the tropical Kimberley. The company is using polar “pods” to provide insulated shelter for the drill teams. The pods have little impact on the natural environment and they are easy to relocate from one site to another.The Department of Mines and Petroleum in Western Australia instigated the Golden Gecko Awards in 1992 to recognise excellence and leadership, and to acknowledge the outstanding contribution recipients have made to balance environmental responsibility with the successful development of the state’s mineral and petroleum resources.Pluton has just announced that Phase II drilling results reveal a substantial increase in the total Inferred mineral resource estimate at Irvine Island, Western Australia, from 294 Mt to 452 Mt. This follows a 450% upgrade to the 294 Mt Inferred resource estimate announced in June 2010. Irvine Island has potential to produce up to 150 Mt of 66% Fe (iron concentrate) with easy access to international markets. The Project is being developed with the support and involvement of the indigenous Mayala community.Phase II diamond drilling is continuing at the Hardstaff Peninsula while a second rig is exploring the island’s Isthmus Region which might result in an initial resource estimate for that area. The drilling program will test the potential of the high grade haematite iron mineralisation that may be suitable as Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) which outcrops at the Isthmus Region over an area of approximately 600 m by 75 m. Outcrop sampling previously conducted in late 2007 across the area returned up to 67.6% Fe from a suite of 16 surface samples.Irvine Island is part of a three-island group which includes Koolan and Cockatoo Islands, where Australia’s first iron ore mining began 60 years ago and where highly sought after Yampi Member iron ore continues to be mined. The Irvine Island Inferred resource is a continuation of the iron ore body at Koolan and Cockatoo Islands. Schoer said: “We are increasingly confident that we are dealing with a significant, high quality, iron ore project which is substantially beyond our initial expectations.”Irvine Island has the advantage of deep-water access allowing iron ore to be loaded directly on to iron ore carriers for international markets. With few infrastructure costs, the total capital investment requirements are approximately A$350 million, which includes ship loading facilities and processing costs, enabling Pluton to produce iron ore product at a projected cash cost of A$37/t on ship.Schoer also said, “Irvine Island contains Direct Shipping Ore and feed ore that can be easily processed to produce high grade iron ore concentrate. Its deep-water access and proximity to Asian markets means that this high quality product can be transported to overseas markets cheaply and efficiently. The deposits at Irvine Island are significant at a national and state level, and will be of substantial economic benefit to the native title claimant group, the Mayala people.”
Queensland’s resources sector is making a determined effort to control costs to ensure the industry remains strong. Michael Roche, the Chief Executive of the Queensland Resources Council, told a training sector gathering in Yeppoon yesterday that coal companies were undertaking root and branch cost reviews. Roche said they had started to close unprofitable parts of their operations, economise on their use of contractors, slowed or cancelled work on new projects and slimmed down corporate offices.“As pointed out by BHP Billition CEO Marius Kloppers, the industry has had a perfect storm of plummeting prices, rising costs and an Australian dollar that remains stubbornly high” said Roche. “And now, on top of that, we have increased state royalty imposts that, combined with the 30% company income tax rate, will mean Queensland will carry an effective taxation rate of 50% on a typical coking coal operation. This now makes us the equal highest taxing coal jurisdiction globally. However the industry has put a proposal to the Queensland Government to inflation proof the new royalty rates announced in the budget, which ramp up from 7 to 12.5% and then to 15%.”He continues: “‘We have been able to show that indexing the thresholds will go a long way to limiting the damage to the net present values of new projects caused by the royalty hike. If the government agrees to indexation, it will pull the effective tax rate over the life of a typical coking coal project back to 45% – high but not higher than where we were before the latest royalty increase. Unless the thresholds for those stepped rates are indexed, Queensland’s effective tax rate for coal will keep on rising to be far and away the highest in the world and sadly a survey of QRC members has confirmed that this royalty hike is likely to lead to more job cuts and new projects being put on hold. This is disturbing news given that on our estimates some 4,000 employees and contractors have been let go by coal companies over the past few months.”However, it’s not all doom and gloom. Roche told the Resources RTO Conference that even under a scaled-back growth scenario, beyond the current cyclical downturn, the 10 to 15 year outlook was huge. He said the QRC had welcomed the government’s establishment of the Resources Committee of Cabinet, under the chairmanship of Deputy Premier Seeney, to address the regulatory burdens left by the former Labor government. “Early indications are that the government is genuine in its determination to deliver tangible cost-reducing and productivity-boosting reforms through the new Cabinet Committee” said Roche. He also told the Resources RTO Conference that even if only half the 66 major resource sector projects identified in QRC’s Growth Outlook Study released last November go ahead, this would represent capital expenditure of over A$70 billion.“This means that we will continue to face shortages of skilled people” said Roche. “Just today a quick look on a major jobs site shows there are currently 2,300 vacancies in our sector in Queensland. We can’t continue along the business as usual model with education and training. One of the first priorities for change recommended by the Queensland Government’s Queensland Skills and Training Taskforce, which I chair, is an overhaul of the TAFE system. We need to put in place innovative measures, and quickly, to ensure that Queenslanders can reap maximum benefit from the coming growth cycle. However, if Queenslanders are to enjoy the full potential of its valuable mineral and energy resources, the government needs think twice about any measure that will result in the sector creeping up the global cost curve.”
America’s National Mining Association (NMA) is examining a final rule issued recently by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) requiring new proximity detection technology to be installed on all continuous mining machines used in underground coal mines. The rule is effective beginning March 15 with staggered deadlines varying with the manufactured dates of machines in use. The final rule accepts NMA’s suggestion to replace MSHA’s proposed requirement for fixed distance detection zones around continuous miners with a performance standard for determining when machines would automatically be stopped. As finalised, the rule also addresses a second NMA concern by allowing more time for re-built machines to implement the requirements for installing the proximity technology.NMA will comment further on the rule after consulting with member companies and soliciting their views of its impact on operations.
Normet, the leader in sprayed concrete solutions, has expanded its offering array to give customers “ever increasing flexibility in tailoring their tunnelling operations for safety through mechanised spraying and productivity” with custom equipment configurations for the global industry. The Alpha 1430 Kit is built on a self-supporting frame and fits a wide variety of commercially available truck chassis, enabling contractors to efficiently and economically configure a concrete sprayer for medium to large cross section tunnels, applicable in some of the largest underground mining projects.“The success story of the site-proven truck based sprayer Alpha 1430P/PC continues”, explains Marcelo Anabalon, Regional Vice President for Latin America, “and now goes global.” Sprayed Concrete Product Line Manager Ilpo Martikainen elaborates: “The latest innovation from our Chilean R&D organisation enters the market with different versions that can be mounted to almost any commercially available truck chassis with suitable payload capacity. This unique piece of equipment is designed and well suited for those market areas and construction sites where the same concrete spraying units are used in different headings or slopes with different cross section dimensions. The possibility to drive this unit on normal roads (local restrictions may apply) widens the usage of Normet’s technologies to a totally new level.”The Alpha 1430 Kit’s structure and modularity gives the flexibility to add features such as a compressor and electro-hydraulic power pack. Also, changing the kit from one chassis to another is made easy. “We understand that contractors are spraying more and more concrete around the world as this ground support method continues to gain popularity” states Mike Rispin, Senior Vice President for Global Sales and Marketing. “We continue to conceive of innovative and unique ways to enhance their efficiency and competitiveness, whether through our equipment technology, like this Alpha 1430 Kit, or with state-of-the-art construction chemicals, complemented by the expertise of our workforce.”The Alpha 1430 Kit enables the spraying of cross sections up to 12 m in height and 20 m in width. It can be fit to new or used truck chassis. It offers the well know Normet NSP pump and XEP accelerator dosing system reliability. Normet produces the Alpha 1430 Kit both in Peltosalmi, Finland and Santiago de Chile.
Paringa Resources says production ramp-up at its Poplar Grove coal mine in the Illinois Coal Basin of Kentucky, US, has begun with the commencement of higher productivity, continuous underground mining operations.Raw coal is being brought to the surface and has been processed by Poplar Grove’s coal handling preparation plant (CHPP), the company reported.The commencement of mining using company-operated equipment follows approval from the US Mining Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) for the recently amended development ventilation scheme, the company said.Mining to date at Poplar Grove has been undertaken by Paringa’s mining contractor as part of the bottom development using drill and blast techniques. These development activities have included creating a void for the installation of underground infrastructure at the bottom of the slope and a turnout area to enable the efficient movement of underground mining equipment. “This mining activity has produced raw coal which has been run through the CHPP as part of the testing and commissioning of the surface infrastructure,” Paringa said.The mining contractor’s last piece of work is to undertake 80 ft (24 m) of development mining via drill and blast over the next month, which will occur in tandem with Paringa’s operational teams.The next underground mining development activity is the connection of the return and intake air shafts to establish the permanent ventilation system. The connection is being made by Paringa-owned continuous miners in the coal seam, from the turnout to the base of the intake shaft and then to the base of the return shaft. This mining is producing raw coal for processing and subsequent sale to Paringa’s cornerstone customer LG&E. Paringa commenced this activity using the recently commissioned company-operated mining equipment, it said.Paringa said: “The bottom area ground conditions look good with slightly less water and a more competent roof than was expected, although initial mining with the continuous miner has encountered an area of very hard rock which will slow advancement marginally only in the very near term.“Once the permanent ventilation system has been established, the company will commence a typical underground room and pillar mining sequence. All other underground infrastructure, including the bottom sump, temporary slope belt tailpiece and tramp iron magnet, will be commissioned in the coming month to enable the commissioning of the ventilation system needed to begin the room and pillar mining sequence, subject to customary MSHA permanent ventilation system approvals.The company is targeting delivery of first processed coal to LG&E in the second half of March, and has progressed initial shipments activities, including a 2019 shipping schedule and invoicing and payment procedures.On surface, the CHPP is fully commissioned and has been run several times, processing raw material from the mine, with feed comprised of raw coal and waste rock material, Paringa said. “The proportion of raw coal in the plant feed will significantly increase in the coming weeks as mining activities continue using the company operated continuous miner in the coal seam as part of establishing the permanent ventilation system.”Initial raw coal stockpile development has commenced using material produced by company-operated mining equipment, conveyed from the underground mine portal to the preparation plant stockpile area.All other surface infrastructure including the workshops, bath house and river dock has been commissioned.