Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 Tropical Rhythms introduces new Latino flavour to its line-up http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Tropical-Rhythms-introduces-new-Latino-flavour-to-its-line-up_19158909 GRACEKENNEDY has introduced a pineapple coconut flavour to the market via its Tropical Rhythms brand. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Sterling invests in St Kitts Hilton http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Sterling-invests-in-St-Kitts-Hilton_19158974 THE Charles Ross-led Sterling Investments Ltd (SIL) — a listed company with pension funds as its largest shareholders — revealed plans to modestly invest in the Embassy Suites by Hilton presently under construction in the Eastern Caribbean. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Access Financial 'rectifies' loan competitiveness http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Access-Financial--rectifies--loan-competitiveness_19158975 ACCESS Financial Services Ltd (AFS) said that it made its loans more competitive this year in response to the dip in its loan portfolio in 2014. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Tortuga Rum Cakes makes inroads via US shopping channel http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Tortuga-Rum-Cakes-makes-inroads-via-US-shopping-channel_19158903 TORTUGA Rum Cakes continues to make inroads into the US market via a prime position on the popular US television shopping channel, HNS, with its next appearance set for this Monday. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Glen Christian honoured in New York http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Glen-Christian-honoured-in-New-York_19158683 JAMAICAN business-man, Glenford Christian, Founder/ Chairman of Cari-Med Limited and Kirk Distributors, was among seven individuals honoured by the Mavis & Ephraim Hawthorne Golden Krust Foundation Inc at their Tenth Annual Awards Gala at the VIP Country Club in New Rochelle, New York, on June 11. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Rate of cambio closures almost triples http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Rate-of-cambio-closures-almost-triples_19159150 THE local cambio service industry may be treading uncertain waters following the closure of 14 cambios in 2014. That is roughly three times the amount of operations that ceased in the previous year, according to the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ). Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Colour in 3D http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Colour-in-3D-3 Mas Camp came alive in a blaze of colour with the staging of 3DX J’ouvert by Bacchanal Jamaica, the carnival experts. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 03:56:39 GMT Companies Office extends amnesty to July 31 http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Companies-Office-extends-amnesty-to-July-31_19156087 THE Companies Office of Jamaica (COJ) has extended its amnesty for businesses to file outstanding annual returns, to July 31. Local News Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Hope for US-Cuba ties at Havana's 'Park of Sighs' http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Hope-for-US-Cuba-ties-at-Havana-s--Park-of-Sighs-_19157576 HAVANA, Cuba (AFP) — As word spread that the United States will soon turn its interests section into a full-fledged embassy in Havana, Cubans standing outside the mission Wednesday voiced hope for a better future. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica celebrating 50 years http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/The-Institute-of-Chartered-Accountants-of-Jamaica-celebrating-50-years_19158717 The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica (ICAJ) — currently celebrating its 50th anniversary -- made a courtesy call on Governor General Patrick Allen (third left) at King's House yesterday. From left are Elaine Robinson, ICAJ secretary; Dennis Chung, ICAJ president; Bruce Scott, ICAJ vice-president; Rosemarie Heaven, ICAJ executive director; and Dennis Brown, ICAJ treasurer. The Governor General proclaimed the week starting July 5, 2015 as Chartered Accountants' Week. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Puerto Rico power company forced to sell bonds amid crisis http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Puerto-Rico-power-company-forced-to-sell-bonds-amid-crisis_19159172 SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico's troubled power company has been forced to sell bonds again to obtain capital and avoid defaulting on a US$415 million debt payment due Wednesday amid a worsening economic crisis in the US territory. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Obstacles remain in US-Cuban ties relationship http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Obstacles-remain-in--US-Cuban-ties-relationship_19157591 WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — Huge obstacles must still be overcome to fully normalise US-Cuba relations despite Wednesday's announcement that the one-time foes will soon reopen embassies after more than half a century. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT China, Venezuela discuss 10-year co-operation plan http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/China--Venezuela-discuss-10-year-co-operation-plan_19159179 CARACAS, Venezuela (Xinhua) — Venezuela and China on Monday assessed progress in bilateral projects and drafted a 10-year cooperation plan as part of their comprehensive strategic partnership. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT PSOJ looks to Panama – not Greece – as model for Jamaica http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/PSOJ-looks-to-Panama---not-Greece---as-model-for-Jamaica_19159101 YESTERDAY, I discussed the Greek Debt Crisis on the radio station News Talk 93. The starting point for the discussion was the recent Guardian newspaper article "I know how I would vote in the Greek referendum" by Noble prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, implying -- although not stating -- that he would vote No in the planned Greek referendum. Local Business Fri, 03 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Budgeting for Family Vacation http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Your-Money---July-2_19153482 School is out and summer is here! For the children it's the beginning of two months of freedom, but for the parents it can start a period of overspending and loss of budgetary control. While you want to ensure that your children enjoy their vacation, it's important not to spend more than you can afford on summer fun. Local Lifestyle Thu, 02 Jul 2015 01:00:00 GMT Blue Power's tax-free bubble pops http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Blue-Power-s-tax-free-bubble-pops_19153867 THE listed soap and lumber company, Blue Power Group Ltd, made $70 million net profit-after-tax for its April 2015 year end or 25 per cent lower year-on-year due to higher marketing spend and its inability to increase prices. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT Digicel Group posts US$157m net loss http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Digicel-Group-posts-US-157m-net-loss_19153862 DIGICEL Group's mobile subscriber base and total revenues remained flat amid posting a US$157.6 million (J$18.2 b) net loss for its March 2015 year end, documents indicate. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT US$200-m green energy projects by next year http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/US-200-m-green-energy-projects-by-next-year_19153871 INVESTORS will construct some J$23.2 billion worth of green renewable energy projects in the island by next year, according to Julian Robinson. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT The feasibility of privatising utilities in Jamaica (Part 2) http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/The-feasibility-of-privatising-utilities-in-Jamaica--Part-2-_19153781 IN Part 1 of this article I dealt with the difficult first three phases of the history of Jamaica's utilities, from initial private ownership and a period of "quasi expropriation" through political regulation and then state ownership. In this part the subsequent reprivatisations and future opportunities are discussed. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Somerset Falls up for sale http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Somerset-Falls-up-for-sale_19153887 The family-led LP Azar group aims to sell Somerset Falls in Portland which it acquired less than five years ago. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT SMEs must be their own first investors http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/SMEs-must-be-their-own-first-investors_19153888 Branch manager of the National Commercial Bank (NCB) Dave Wilson is adamant that SMEs seeking finance from lending institutions must be willing to invest in their own businesses prior to believing that investors will. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Local candy start-up puts toe in English waters http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Local-candy-start-up-puts-toe-in-English-waters_19153891 MOGUL in the making, and Chief Executive Officer of Sweetie Confectionery Patria Kaye Aarons has signed a deal with United Kingdom-based distribution companies Ashanti Imports and JLB Shipping. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Minimum business tax http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Minimum-business-tax-_19153783 On April 1, 2014 the Provisional Collection of Tax (Minimum Business Tax) Order, 2014 took effect. This order empowered the commissioner general of Tax Administration Jamaica to collect a Minimum Business Tax (MBT) of $60,000 from "specified taxpayers", payable in two equal instalments on or before June 15 and September 15 of each year. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT Hedge funds get busy in JSE stocks http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/Hedge-funds-get--busy-in-JSE-stocks_19153791 THERE have been interesting developments over the past approximately six to nine months in the ownership structures of publicly listed companies on the Exchange. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 02:00:00 GMT New branding for Tropical Rhythms to keep in step with global trends http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/New-branding-for-Tropical-Rhythms-to-keep-in-step-with-global-trends_19153877 GRACEKENNEDY has invested US$200,000 ($23.2 million) on recyclable plastic labels in its aim of becoming a global consumer group by 2020. Local Business Wed, 01 Jul 2015 00:00:00 GMT