Social Media Outrage: Guyanese rally around DDL after milk blocked in Trinidad

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Hours after Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) made public that its products were rejected in Trinidad and Tobago, Guyanese took to social media questioning whether similar measures should be applied to products imported from the Twin Island Republic.

Former Chairman of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) Nicholas Deygoo-Boyer, in a Facebook post, said the Government Analyst Food and Drug Administration should review shipments of products made in Trinidad and Tobago “in the interest of fairness.”

“I am quite sure we might find that some of these need to be rejected and sent back to T&T,” Deygoo- Boyer said in the Facebook post.

Public Relations Specialist, Ajay Baksh was also among a large number of locals weighing in on the issue. In a Facebook post as well, he said that government offices should be restricted from buying Trinidadian products.

Meanwhile, the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) said Trinidad’s recent actions only add to a “notoriously long list” of regional trade violations by the country. Other trade issues include restrictions on the import and/or transshipment of fruits, vegetables and agro-products particularly honey.

“The GCCI can furnish the public with at least one dozen more of these specific types of issues,” the Chamber said.

The Guyana Oil and Gas Energy Chamber (GOGEC) and the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association are two another bodies that raised concerns about the rejection of DDL’s goods.

In a statement, GOGEC said, “Unfortunately, Guyanese exporters have been subjected to this type of unfair treatment by Trinidad and Tobago for decades. Yet, despite the commitment to resolve these issues, they remain unresolved such that these barriers have been weaponized into shields of a trade protectionism agenda.”

Other Guyanese agreed.

“How about Guyanese boycott TT products here and let them feel the squeeze? Can you imagine two containers (of) milk and two containers of bottled water (returned) to Guyana shores, rejected by TT authorities without a cause , while their products come to Guyana freely because of the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME)… ?” Latiff Gonsalves commented under another News Room report on the matter.

“Our very own President Irfaan Ali is the Chairman of CARICOM and this matter needs to be dealt with expeditiously. It’s unfair to Guyanese Companies.

“Trinidad products can enter Guyana with no problem whatsoever but Guyanese products can’t go into Trinidad,” Jason Fernandes also commented.

THE ISSUE?

DDL Chairman Komal Samaroo on Tuesday flagged challenges relating to the export of the company’s products-packaged milk and bottled sparkling water- to Trinidad and Tobago.

“Regrettably the two containers of packaged milk products were denied entry and returned to Guyana, while the bottled water products have been restricted from sale pending the completion of an unconventionally exhaustive examination of these bottled water products,” Mr. Samaroo told reporters at a press conference.

According to Samaroo, those requirements are not in keeping with the thrust for greater intra-regional trade to meet the Caribbean Community’s (CARICOM) goal of slashing costly extra-regional food imports by 2025.

Hours later, Guyana’s Foreign Affairs Ministry said such actions cannot be accepted. It added that these actions run counter to the spirit of integration.

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1 Comment
  1. habeeb says

    The reason, Trini’s products can enter Guyana is because, our leaders in Govt. really don’t give a hoot.
    The honey fiasco comes to mind. Just like what Santokhi from Suriname doing with the fishing license… how long ago that’s been pending… the gilbaaka and their friends in the ocean, must be very happy with Suriname
    PM( not giving Guyanese the license). Think- $145,000 Guyana dollar for a gilbaaka ? And in NYC- Queens-
    about $20. US per pound ?
    Now, if adult Guyanese would just consume more milk , instead of ALCOHOL, they would be healthier… so just stop shipping it to the Trinis. We must first supply of own needs.

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