The private sector is demanding that the government investigate the possible existence of criminal structures which may be operating in an organized manner behind the strike at some ports and customs offices.
From a statement issued by the Chamber of Agriculture in Guatemala:
The Chamber of Industry and the government have organized for November 9 and 10 an international investment forum which will include a business matchmaking service between companies and also conferences.
From a statement issued by Guatemala Investment Summit:
The acquisition of TCB by APM Terminals means that any dispute concerning the granting of Puerto Quetzal will involve the largest group in the world in the maritime sector, the Maersk shipping company.
Following the Public Ministry's denouncement of the existence of an illicit money laundering network operating in the Container Terminal at Quetzal , the government of Jimmy Morales is torn between declaring void the concession contract with the current operator, TCB, as recommended by the Attorney General's Office on several occasions, or making other arrangements with the company. The Morales government may have to negotiate with the Danish giant Maersk Group, which bought 100% of the shares of the Spanish TCB in October 2015, according to an article on Elperiodico.com.gt.
Accession to the WTO agreement would improve exportcompetitiveness through increased availability of information, simplification of procedures, and greater transparency.
Adherence to the Agreement on Trade Facilitation of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which only nine countries have so far ratified, would improve the conditions for access to the international market, mainly through less paperwork, access to information electronically and more efficiency.
The Executive argues that foreign companies planning to invest in the country desist from doing so if they are not provided with tax incentives and the possibility of paying differentiated wages.
The Government is continuing to put pressure on Congress to approve the Investment and Employment Act which has been temporarily suspended due to several actions of unconstitutionality presented before the Court. State representatives say that if the option of differential wage is discontinued permenantly, several foreign companies will desist from making investments in the country.
President Hernández announced that the country will join an ambitious project which for now has not transcended the good but vague intentions of the Mexican government.
From a statement issued by the presidency of Guatemala:
The president of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez, announced in Guatemala City that his country will join the pipeline project, whose construction is the result of a bilateral agreement between Guatemala and Mexico.
The agreement between the two governments states that as of December 15, 2015 customs offices at common borders will suspend their tax functions and allow the free movement of goods and people.
From a statement issued by the Government of Guatemala:
64 years after having started the process of Central American integration, the presidents of Guatemala, Otto Pérez Molina, and Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez, signed a historic agreement for a customs union between the two nations today, from which it is expected that economic growth of 15% will be produced in the short term. The agreement aims to eliminate the three land crossings on the borders of the two countries.
The Executive is considering increasing taxes on cigarettes and alcoholic beverages as an option for balancing the 2015 budget.
With the provisional suspension of the tax on telephone lines the Guatemalan government is left with a deficit $237 million, approximately, which is why it is looking at bridging the gap using new taxes on liquor and cigarettes, as the main alternative.
The private sector is asking the government to repeal the new tariff schedule in the ports of Quetzal and Santo Tomas de Castilla, saying it there is no justification for it and the competitiveness of ports is deteriorating.
According to employers, the increase is not only unwarranted, but also directly impacts the cost structure of firms, which end up passing on the prices increases to end consumers.
Both governments are considering building a 2000 MW dam on the Usumacinta river border, in northwestern Guatemala.
The authorities of the Guatemalan and Mexican governments are considering the possibility of building a dam on the border river, with investment being shared between the two countries, along with the energy produced.
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