Princess Cruises and Fincantieri announced on Thursday the signing of the final contracts for the construction of two next-generation 175,000-ton cruise ships, which will be the largest ships ever built so far in Italy, with deliveries scheduled in Monfalcone in late 2023 and in March 2025. This announcement follows the initial signing of a memorandum of agreement between the two parties in July 2018.
Colombia and its state-run oil company, Ecopetrol, announced they have signed an offshore exploration and production deal for a nearly 400,000-hectare (988,000-acre) bloc in the Caribbean, the country's first new oil and gas contract in more than four years.
The United Kingdom has deployed a team of specialists to the Caribbean to help mitigate the impact of impending storms threatening British Overseas territories. According to Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson, 87 engineers, medics, maritime experts and other specialists have joined the regular crew of RFA Mounts Bay, which is the mobile hub of the British relief effort.
The State Department announced last week that it would temporarily recall U.S. ambassadors to the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and Panama for consultations in Washington. The meetings will focus on recent decisions by Latin American countries to no longer recognize Taiwan and ways the U.S. can support strong. independent, democratic institutions and economies throughout Central America and the Caribbean
Chile's Supreme Court ordered the seizure of more than US$1.6 million from the assets of the late dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet. The top court also sentenced three former military officers to four years in prison for embezzlement of public funds in a case involving Pinochet, but allowed them to remain free under conditional liberty.
The Dominican Republic and China announced on Tuesday they were establishing diplomatic relations as the Caribbean country became the latest nation to dump Taiwan, leaving it with just 19 diplomatic allies around the globe. Taipei said it was “deeply upset” at the decision, which it blamed on “dollar diplomacy”. The move deepens the island's international isolation while its giant neighbor flexes its economic and political might on the global stage.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, ECLAC, forecasted a downward trend in the region’s economic activity for 2015 to -0.3% from 0.5%, and estimates that for 2016 growth will be close to 0.7%.
The Barbados-based Caribbean Tourism Organization, CTO, is projecting a 5% increase in tourist arrivals in 2015 after the region recorded its best year ever in 2014. CTO Secretary General Hugh Riley told reporters a record 26.3 million visitors came to the Caribbean last year, spending a record US$29.2 billion.
The United Kingdom has issued a new health advisory for Britons travelling to the Caribbean following a surge in the incidence of dengue fever in England. The steep rise in British cases of the mosquito-borne disease has forced the health agency Public Health England (PHE) to warn travelers to be on the alert for signs of the illness after visiting the Caribbean.
Latinamerica and the Caribbean are poised to grow 3% this year, according to the July Economic Survey of Latin America and the Caribbean, which is down from the previous April estimate of 3.5%. Slower growth in the region’s two largest economies Brazil and Mexico, and more modest activity in Chile, Panama and Peru have pulled the average down.