HANGING ON: Commuters ride on a cargo truck used for public transport in Valencia, Venezuela, on July 11. –Photo: REUTERS

ON a recent afternoon, a crowd of hundreds massed on the pavement outside an exit from the subway in the central Venezuelan city of Valencia.

But when a flatbed truck previously used to transport water bottles pulled up nearby, a ruthless scramble kicked off with pregnant women, parents holding toddlers and elderly Venezuelans all jostling to get themselves aboard.

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THE Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) says Trinidadian Brian Frontin waselected president of the Caribbean Society of Hotel Association Executives (CSHAE) during a meeting here on Saturday.

CL Financial and CLICO have the capacity to repay immediately the $8.1 billion that the Government says the group owes it for the bailout of the conglomerate that began 11 years ago, according to the shareholders of CL Financial, who have launched a legal campaign to wrest control of the group from the State.

Frustrated, disappointed and concern about the elderly were just some of the sentiments expressed by several people who lined up outside the Central Bank to exchange their old $100 cotton bills for the new polymer notes on Thursday morning.

FINANCE Minister Colm Imbert said the Government could not risk having important legislation failing in the Parliament and affecting this country’s relationship with the Global Forum.

REMITTANCE fees are too high in the Caribbean, says economist Marla Dukharan. “Remittance fees in the Caribbean are nearly double those of Central America, which is also another heavily dependent region on remittances. The average cost of remittances in the region is 8.9 per cent of the transaction and it can get as high as 11 per cent,” she said yesterday.