European Union

EU and UNICEF give tablets to migrant children today

Venezuelan migrant children received special equipment today, to ensure they can continue with their education while in this country.

UNICEF and the European Union, together with local partners Living Water Community, have been collaborating to ensure that migrant Venezuelan children have access to formal education opportunities in Trinidad and Tobago.

As part of these efforts, the EU has funded a project which provides tablets to the children to use as part of a blended online/face-to-face instruction programme.

INTERNATIONAL: Boris Johnson to pull Brexit vote and push for election if his timetable is voted down later

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will scrap the vote on his Brexit deal—the Withdrawal Agreement Bill (WAB)—and push for a snap general election, if his program motion is voted down by lawmakers later.

If Parliament "gets its way and decides to delay everything," Johnson told the Commons, "the bill will have to be pulled and we will have to go forward... to a general election."

"I will in no way allow months more of this," Johnson added.

The program motion has come under attack for asking MPs to consider Johnson's Brexit deal in just three days.

INTERNATIONAL: MPs' vote on Brexit deal ruled out by Speaker John Bercow

The Commons Speaker has refused a government request to hold a "yes" or "no" vote on its Brexit deal.

John Bercow said a motion on the deal had already been brought before MPs on Saturday, and it would be "repetitive and disorderly" to debate it again.

Saturday's sitting saw an amended motion nodded through by MPs, which withholds approval of Boris Johnson's deal until it has been passed into law.

The PM agreed a deal with the EU last week, but it must be approved by MPs.

Tewarie tells Govt: "Pay cane farmers before they die..."

Ca­roni Cen­tral MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie made a pas­sion­ate plea for Gov­ern­ment to pay the coun­try’s age­ing cane farm­ers who he claimed are owed mil­lions of dol­lars be­fore they die one-by-one.

The mat­ter was raised at yes­ter­day’s Stand­ing Fi­nance Com­mit­tee in ex­am­in­ing the 2020 ex­pen­di­ture of the Min­istry of Plan­ning and De­vel­op­ment in Par­lia­ment.

The com­mit­tee was told that $5 mil­lion was al­lo­cat­ed in the 2019 bud­get for the farm­ers of which $1.7 mil­lion had been spent.

INTERNATIONAL: Brexit: EU and UK reach deal but DUP refuses support

A Brexit deal has been agreed between the UK and EU before a meeting of European leaders in Brussels.

Boris Johnson and Jean-Claude Juncker called it a "fair" outcome. The EU Commission President said there was no need to extend the Brexit deadline.

He said: "We have a deal so why should we have a prolongation."

This will be a boost for the PM [Boris Johnson], but he still faces a battle to get the deal through Parliament on Saturday, with the DUP opposing it.

Mr Johnson urged MPs to "come together" and "get this excellent deal over the line".

T&T now one of only 7 countries on EU tax haven blacklist

The finance ministers of the 28 European Union member states have removed two countries St Kitts and Nevis and the Bahamas from the blacklist of tax havens.

Trinidad and Tobago, however, remains one of only seven countries still blacklisted.

The communique of the Council of Finance Ministers confirmed the seven countries that remain on the blacklist: Guam, Namibia, Palau, Samoa, American Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago and the US Virgin Islands.

Internationally: Two years for Brexit to happen

Prime Minister Theresa May is to officially notify the European Union next Wednesday that the UK is leaving.

Downing Street said she would write a letter to the European Council, adding that it hoped negotiations on the terms of exit and future relations could then begin as quickly as possible.

An EU spokesman said it was "ready and waiting" for the letter.

Mrs May's spokesman also rejected reports an early election may be held, saying: "It's not going to happen."