by Linda Straker
- Main cement supplier in Trinidad and Tobago not exporting product
- Reduced business activities in T&T linked to containing and controlling spread of Covid-19
- In 2004, permission was sought to import cement from outside region
Grenada is seeking permission from the relevant Caricom body to allow the island to purchase cement from outside of the region because the main supplier in Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) is not exporting product because of reduced business activities linked to containing and controlling the spread of Covid-19 in the neighboring territory.
The twin-island republic has been in a state of lockdown with limited movement for the past 12 months but the recent increase in Covid-19 positive cases had the country adopting new measures reducing not just the movement of its citizens, but business activity both the export and domestic markets.
Accelerating the implementation of construction projects, both in the public and private sector is part of the Government’s post Covid-19 plan because it will create welcomed employment in the construction and tourism sectors with positive spin-off effects in other sectors. The Recovery Plan was recently tabled in the Parliament.
However, in recent weeks Grenada began experiencing a severe shortage of cement and other construction supplies and Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell disclosed that the Government is seeking to deal with the shortage by importing from extra-regional markets.
“We still believe that construction is key to the recovery and any problem that we are having there must be corrected, that is why we sought and most likely received support from the regional institution to proceed and buy cement extra-regional,” he said.
“I did not mention the problem of materials for construction. We need to have more than one quarry and more than one asphalt plant which will give you further opportunity for supply in those areas,” he said during a special engagement with the media.
The Prime Minister did not reveal the names of the companies or organizations that are seeking to import the cement but indicated that several applications were submitted. In 2004, Grenada, in the aftermath of Hurricane Ivan also had to seek permission to import cement from outside the region.