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Workforce flexibility key to COVID reality

By YOURI KEMP Tribune Business Reporter ykemp@tribunemedia.net Workforce flexibility will be key as Bahamian companies struggle to adapt to the new COVID-19 environment, human resources chiefs said yesterday. Paul Haven, Doctor’s Hospital's hum

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Jitney’s to resume today following protest

A public transportation stakeholder is excited to be “back in swing” as jitneys will be allowed to operate with limited capacity today after the second COVID-19 related shutdown in six months.

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Hardship sign: Incoming wire transfers 'doubling'

The Bahamas is no longer "a sending country" for international wire transfers, money transmission providers revealed yesterday, with incoming transactions "doubling" due to COVID-19 hardship. Harvey Morris, Omni Financial Group’s chief executive, to

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Freeport private sector demands lockdown end

Freeport's private sector yesterday demanded the Government "cease and desist" from further business lockdowns amid fears The Bahamas will "die economically" unless it learns to live with COIVID-19. Some 184 Grand Bahama-based small business owners,

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'I'm used to working hard for what I get - this is like begging'

MANY Bahamians who are recipients of the $1m a week National Food Distribution Programme say they are grateful, but others are expressing anger in having to rely on it in the first place. In June when COVID-19 restrictions began to relax, the govern

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Second COVID-19 wave is worse, warns Bartlett

Dr Frank Bartlett, the coordinator at the GB Health Services COVID-19 Task Force has revealed that patients contracting the coronavirus in the second wave are “more sicker” and are hospitalized “much longer” than those in the first wave. He also dis

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Customs officers in quarantine

SEVERAL customs officers in Abaco have been placed under quarantine after a worker was reportedly exposed to a COVID-19 positive patient on the island, prompting officials there to close the Customs Department at the Leonard M Thompson International

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AID: 'Still best time' for $8.2m projects

A major Bahamian retailer yesterday said it believes this is “still the best time to go ahead” with its $8.2m investment in new stores despite the latest national COVID-19 lockdown. Jason Watson, Automotive Industrial Distributors (AID) president, t

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Abaco mother worried about support after her son tests positive

AN Abaco woman, whose son has COVID-19, says she is concerned about the lack of communication from health officials on the island as she and her husband have yet to be tested for the virus.

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Pandemic hinders restoration of water in Grand Bahama

Grand Bahama Utility Company has reported full restoration of water potability for the island is being “severely hampered” by the global coronavirus pandemic. To date, 70 percent of GBUC’s customer base has potable supply, Philcher Grant, director o

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Negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test NOT required for Bahamian, resident hotel guests

The Ministry of Tourism has released a statement to confirm that a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test is not required by Bahamian and resident guests of hotels.

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Cat Island residents keen to cooperate with tracing

AFTER two residents of Cat Island tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, island administrator Neil Campbell said those who came in contact with them on the island are cooperating and making contact tracing easy for authorities there. “So far every

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UPDATED: First two cases of COVID-19 on Cat Island

TWO residents of Cat Island have tested positive for COVID-19, the island’s administrator Neil Campbell confirmed Tuesday.

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Hotelier calls for 'calibrated' action on COVID surge

A Harbour Island hotelier yesterday urged the government to adopt “a more calibrated approach” to the surge in COVID-19 infections rather than cut off all commercial transport links to the US.Benjamin Simmons, proprietor of The Other Side and Ocean V

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Grand Bahama isolated by new daily curfew

PRIME Minister Dr Hubert Minnis implemented a new daily curfew for Grand Bahama and banned international and domestic travel to and from the island, following a resurgence of COVID-19 cases there. During his national address yesterday, Dr Minnis sai

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Pizza Hut sanitised and reopened after employee tested positive

PIZZA Hut in Grand Bahama has reopened for business following a complete sanitisation of its premises on the Mall Drive, Freeport after one of its employees last week tested positive for COVID-19. The fast-food restaurant resumed operations on Wedn

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'Better July than 2019' won't cover $2m COVID loss

A Harbour Island hotelier yesterday revealed that while his resort may “ironically enjoy a better July than last year” it will not make up for the $2m lost during the COVID-19 lockdown, Benjamin Simmons, proprietor of The Other Side and Ocean View p

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GB businesses urge Florida travelling ban

Grand Bahama businesses yesterday urged the government to block Bahamians travelling to Florida to prevent another island-wide COVID-19 lockdown. Greg Langstaff, owner of the Grand Bahama Brewing Company, told Tribune Business : “Unfortunately, just

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‘One rule for all please’

BAHAMIAN restaurant owners are urging Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis to extend privileges evenly, not selectively during the COVID-19 state of emergency.

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Freeport Pizza Hut staff member tests positive for COVID-19

Pizza Hut in Freeport is closed until Wednesday after a member of its staff tested positive for COVID-19. I

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'Devastating' if COVID-19 finds its way to Exuma

Exuma’s Chamber of Commerce chief has warned it will be “devastating” for business and consumer confidence if the border re-opening brings COVID-19 to the island. Pedro Rolle told Tribune Business in a recent interview that many residents remained n

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Retailers reveal slow Independence sales

Retailers yesterday revealed sluggish Independence Day sales due to the continuing economic fall-out and uncertainty caused by COVID-19. Pedro Neely, owner of PC Smart Tees, told Tribune Business this was his first year of operations “but we’re tryi

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COVID scare closes BPL

BAHAMAS Power and Light temporarily closed its Peter I Bethel Building to customers yesterday for cleaning after an unsubstantiated COVID-19 scare. According to a source, a customer was in a casual conversation with another person at the BPL buildin

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EU excludes Bahamas from list of countries allowed to visit

THE Bahamas has been left off the list of countries whose residents are allowed to travel to the European Union when the bloc opens its borders to international travel today. Due to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the United States, America has also be

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More travel restrictions lifted

TRAVEL restrictions from China, Europe, South Korea and Iran will be lifted on July 1 when international commercial flights to The Bahamas resumes, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced yesterday. Residents and visitors coming to this country wi

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Small business loans slow with $50m requests

Applications for the government’s COVID-19 small business recovery loan have collectively sought double the $25m initially allocated for the programme, it was revealed yesterday.Davinia Grant, the Small Business Development Centre’s (SBDC) director,

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Ministry highlights protocols required for entry

IN preparation for the country’s full tourism re-opening on July 1, the Ministry of Tourism & Aviation is reminding residents and visitors to ensure that they complete the necessary protocols in order to gain entry into the country.

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Negative result for cargo ship worker

A CARGO ship worker who was transported from Exuma to New Providence last week has tested negative for COVID-19, the Ministry of Heath said. The 33-year-old male patient works on a cargo ship that services the Caribbean and the Turks and Caicos Isla

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Steroid is available for COVID-19 treatment

BRITAIN has made a breakthrough with a drug for the treatment of COVID-19 and according to coordinator of the government’s COVID-19 task force the medicine is already here in The Bahamas awaiting approval to be used. The drug, a low dose steroid, is

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'Transformative' COVID leaves retailer targeting overseas expansions

A Bahamian retail entrepreneur says COVID-19’s “transformative” impact has spurred him to look at regional expansion with sales “30 percent off” as his businesses emerge from lockdown.Andrew Wilson, the Quality Business Centre (QBC) proprietor, told

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Bahamians stuck in Europe heading home

BAHAMIAN citizens and residents who were stuck in the United Kingdom and Europe due to the COVID-19 pandemic are set to return home today.

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Insurers: COVID order 'too restrictive to trade'

Bahamian property and casualty insurers are urging the government to adjust its COVID-19 premium deferral order on the grounds that it is “too restrictive to trade” as peak hurricane season nears.Anton Saunders, RoyalStar Assurance’s managing directo

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'Storm in teacup' on COVID repatriation

The aviation operator that returned seven persons to The Bahamas before they had been tested for COVID-19 yesterday described it as “a storm in a tea cup”, and added: “We have to get beyond the fear-mongering.” Paul Aranha, president of Trans-Island

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Retailers: 'Curb side can't cover AC costs'

Several Bahamian retailers were yesterday said to be on the verge of bankruptcy due to the COVID-19 lockdown, with some saying: “Curb side sales can’t even cover the cost of turning the AC on.”Tara Morley, the Bahamas Federation of Retailers (BFR) co

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'Stop picking virus winners and losers'

A Bahamian retailer yesterday urged the government to “stop picking winners and losers” in determining which businesses are COVID-19 “essentials” after he was forced to fully terminate 20 staff.Egan Kemp, president of Eunison Company, the Shoe Depot

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BISX-listed firms warn on dividends

Several BISX-listed companies have warned shareholders against “undue optimism” that dividend payments will continue given the need to preserve cash and liquidity during the COVID-19 pandemic. Both JS Johnson and Family Guardian cautioned investors

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Retailer calls for easing of restrictions

A LOCAL retailer is calling on the government to further ease COVID-19 restrictions on businesses in the clothing industry, saying the current curbside and delivery services are not working. Speaking to The Tribune yesterday, the store’s representat

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Warning new loans could be expensive

Fears have been raised that the Government's debt costs may double with any new COVID-19 foreign currency borrowings it undertakes as a result of unfavourable secondary market conditions.

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Fears as Bimini gets ready for lockdown

RESIDENTS of Bimini said while they have prepared “as best they could” for the two-week lockdown which begins today but fear provisions may not be enough for some households struggling to make ends meet. Pertrisa Saunders from Bailey Town, Bimini, s

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Family Islands with no COVID-19 could see relaxation of restrictions

THERE could be a further relaxation of restrictions on more Family Islands with no COVID-19 cases, according to consultant to the Office of the Prime Minister Dr Merceline Dahl-Regis.

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Health chief 'deeply concerned' about growth of virus in Americas

THE director of the Pan American Health Organization, Carissa Etienne, called on countries to address health, social and economic emergencies, saying she is “deeply concerned” by the rapid expansion of the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic in the A

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Illnesses in children being monitored after signs rare disease could be linked to coronavirus

HEALTH officials are “actively” searching for signs of inflammatory illnesses among children who tested positive for COVID-19 after international reports have revealed that a rare disease found in children could be linked to the virus. The New York

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Three-year 'VAT credit' to boost Family Islands

The government is being urged to use a three-year system of VAT credits to rescue Family Island businesses and encourage investment by their owners in a bid to revive these economies post-COVID-19.The proposal is contained in documents submitted to t

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Farmers see 'quadrupling' of interest

The Bahamian public’s interest in farming and growing their own produce has “quadrupled” due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the head of an agriculture group said yesterday.

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Contractors: We have to live with COVID-19

Bahamian contractors yesterday conceded that re-opening the construction sector involves “a big risk” and “cannot be business as usual”, but argued: “Living with COVID-19 is the new reality.”Leonard Sands, the Bahamian Contractors Association’s (BCA)

Airlifted Bimini patient tests negative for COVID-19

A BIMINI woman who was airlifted to New Providence after experiencing a fever and breathing difficulties on Monday has been released after testing negative for COVID-19, a relative said. The 65-year-old woman is the step-mother of former consul gene

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'My faith in God keeps my head above water'

A Grand Bahama mother who is now unemployed as a result of the COVID-19 shutdown says things are very tough, but her faith in God is keeping her “head above water.”Two months before the crisis, the single mother was employed at Freeport Harbour and g

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Testing is ramped up as confirmed cases now 60

OFFICIALS ramped up COVID-19 testing over the weekend, beginning with healthcare workers at tertiary medical facilities in New Providence as they seek to contain the spread of the deadly virus in the country. This comes as the country reported addit

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TACKLING THE COVID-19 CRISIS: What ideas do you have?

With regards to tackling the COVID-19 crisis, Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands said there is no monopoly on good ideas and he wants the public to make suggestions. Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis also called out to the Bahamian people, saying: "We want your ideas."

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Wendy's confirms COVID-19 case

WENDY’S Bahamas yesterday confirmed an employee tested positive for COVID-19 last week.

Family speak of their heartache after father, 80, dies of COVID-19

CHAD Bartlett will miss his 80-year-old father’s laughter and business-like demeanour the most now that he is gone.

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INSIGHT: Selfishly dicing with death - it’s that simple

COVID-19, or what some health experts and those on the frontline have begun referring to as “the beast”, has infected over a million people worldwide and taken the lives of nearly 70,000 people – a 100 percent increase in just a week. Of those dead, some of our brothers and sisters were also taken from us in another week highlighting a disregard by some of the guidelines put in place by the government to save our lives.

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