Trade, Industry and Investments Minister Vasant Bharath says by December this year the Port Authority will have the capacity to scan some 200 containers per hour. He said the Government recently purchased the $25 million scanner through a grant funded by the government of China. “We expect delivery and operation of the scanner by Christmas 2013,” he told legislators.
Bharath was contributing to yesterday’s Senate debate, Tower D, Waterfront Centre, Wrightson Road, Port-of-Spain, on the 2014 national budget, which was presented earlier by Finance and the Economy Minister Larry Howai. He said the funds were available to the Government for more than ten years but not accessed by former governments.
Bharath said the Government was about establish seven industrial parks at central and south Trinidad. He said the industrial parks are to be “rolled out by December 2014.” He said there were also plans to establish dry docking facilities at Sea Lots. He said the project was being undertaken with Trinidad Dry Dock Company Ltd. He said China Harbour was conducting a feasibility study for the project and the report will be available at the end of this month.
Bharath also said the Solid Waste Management Company Ltd was looking at a joint venture and a private sector company for the disposal of all waste. He did not name the joint venture company but said the project related to the removal of waste at the Beetham, Forres Park and Guanapo landfill sites. He said the lands were expected to be returned to the Government after six years.
The minister also revealed that the former Business Development Company approved more than 878 loans over its ten-year existence but only 157 were repaid. He the total value of the loans was $58.8 million and only $2.18 million was recovered.