PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago, Thursday, September 27 2012 – Rising crime in Trinidad and Tobago is cutting into business profitability and ultimately harming the twin-island republic’s economic fortunes.
This was the message sent by American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) president Hugh Howard as he addressed the opening ceremony of the Amcham’s HSSE Conference and Exhibition at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Port-of-Spain yesterday (September 26).
Howard said: “crime continues to be a grave cause of concern” as current detection and conviction rates could be considered to “embolden the perpetrators who appear to carry out their nefarious acts with impunity.”
Howard implored authorities and those business persons present to adopt a joint approach to “recapture our beloved country from the criminal element — white-collar and violent.”
“Everyone including the private sector, civil society, religious bodies and community groups has a role to play in the identification and implementation of solutions,” said Howard.
Along with the general economic fallout from crime, Howard specifically noted that there were far ranging impacts on business, including lower productivity, lost time due to injuries and low employee morale.
He added that the crime situation had also had a negative impact on the country’s ranking on the Global Competitiveness Index as a place for doing business.