November 29, 2021

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iNews-briefs217Information for Cayman Islands students planning to study overseas

Did you know that as a British Overseas Territory Citizen you are entitled to pay the ‘home rate’ of university fees if you choose to study in England? This means that for 2014, universities in England can charge a maximum of £9,000 a year, much less than most overseas universities charge. If you are planning to study overseas next year, why not check out what courses are available in England? Full details can be found at

If you do decide that studying in England would be right for you, applying early is advisable. For the majority of universities and courses, applications should be submitted by 15 January. However, if you are not quite ready to apply by then, many universities and colleges offer extended deadlines for overseas students. You should check directly with the overseas admissions office of your chosen university.

Contact: Joanne Vaughan, 244 2434, e-mail [email protected] or Gill Skinner, 244-2431, e-mail: [email protected]


Conyers advises on the establishment of a Cayman Islands securitization structure for Manitowoc Company, Inc.

Conyers advised on the establishment of a Cayman Islands securitization structure for this major multi-national manufacturing concern. This was the 5th Amended and Restated Receivables Purchase Agreement. The Manitowoc Company, Inc. is a multi-industry, capital goods manufacturer with over 100 manufacturing and service facilities in 27 countries. It is recognised as one of the world’s largest providers of lifting equipment for the global construction industry, including lattice-boom cranes, tower cranes, mobile telescopic cranes and boom trucks. Manitowoc also is one of the world’s leading innovators and manufacturers of commercial foodservice equipment serving the ice, beverage, refrigeration, food prep and cooking needs of restaurants, convenience stores, hotels, healthcare and institution applications. The structure was designed to effectively securitize its German and Canadian accounts receivables.

Kevin Butler, Head of Conyers’ Cayman office, advised on the matter, working alongside Quarles & Brady LLP and Mayer Brown LLP.


The Caribbean Writer announces its Volume 27 Prize Winners

Kingshill, St. Croix, Virgin Islands — The Caribbean Writer has announced its annual prize winners from Volume 27, which highlights music and visual arts. Topping the list is a new annual prize: The Cecile deJongh Literary Prize ($500) awarded to an author whose work best expresses the spirit of the Caribbean. This new annual prize is donated by Governor, John P. deJongh in honor of his wife’s commitment to literacy. It was awarded to LuviaJane Swanson, who resides on the island of St. John. Her stories have appeared in the Fairy Tale Journal, Cabinet des Fees, and in the Sam’s Dot publications, Beyond Century and Aiofe’s Kiss.

The David Hough Literary Prize was awarded to Denise Campbell Laidler, a Jamaican born writer. This $500 prize is awarded to an author who is a resident of the Caribbean. It is donated by Sonja Hough, owner of Sonja’s Designs, the handmade jewelry designer in Christiansted, St. Croix, in memory of her late husband.

The Daily News Prize for poetry ($300) was awarded to Ernestia Fraser, a writer from Nassau, Bahamas. The Canute A. Brodhurst Prize for fiction ($400) was awarded to Leiso Edwards, a writer from May Pen, Jamaica. The Charlotte and Isidor Paiewonsky Prize for first time publication ($250) in The Caribbean Writer went to Caribbean writer, Mary Slechta who lives and teaches in New York City.

The Marguerite Cobb-McKay Prize to a Virgin Islands author ($200) went to Kate Melone of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, who has degrees in both Literature and Visual Arts. Her poems have been widely published in several volumes of The Caribbean Writer.


For more information on The Caribbean Writer, please visit


234 persons for only 20 Cayman Islands government’s affordable homes

Julio Ramos, General Manager of the Cayman Islands National Housing Development Trust has revealed that only one of the 20 affordable homes currently being constructed in Bodden Town, Grand Cayman has been allocated.

This is despite over 230 persons have applied.

Ramos explained on CITN/Cayman27’s News on Wednesday (17) that the Trust members had to go through “several years worth of back logged requests.”

“Obviously 234 applications for 20 houses is a lot,” he said. “However the position was taken that we would assess these individuals and there by not ignoring or overlooking anyone.”

Ramos admitted the process has been slow but by the end of January 2014 the allocation process will be completed as will the homes under construction.


Mass grave of 230 killed by jihadists found in Syria

From Business Insider

Beirut (AFP) – The bodies of 230 people killed by the Islamic State group have been found in a mass grave uncovered by their relatives in Syria’s Deir Ezzor province, a monitoring group said Wednesday.

The discovery brings the number of members of the Shaitat tribe killed during the jihadists’ summer advance in Deir Ezzor province near Iraq to more than 900, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

For more:


DARPA-funded mind-controlled robotic arm now works a lot better

iNews B-roboticarmBy Mariella From Engadget

At Expand NY in November, DARPA Director Arati Prabhakar talked about the erm, friendlier projects the agency is funding, including a mind-controlled robotic arm tested by Pittsburgh native Jan Scheuermann. Her test run has recently ended, but the University of Pittsburgh researchers in charge of project have published a paper detailing how much the limb has improved over the past two years. Before they took off Jan’s implants, she could already move not just arm itself, but also its wrist and fingers — she reportedly even beat her brother at a rock-paper-and-scissors game. “Overall, our results indicate that highly coordinated, natural movement can be restored to people whose arms and hands are paralyzed,” said Pitt School of Medicine professor Andrew Schwartz, Ph.D.

In 2012, the scientists surgically placed the neural implants in the parts of Scheuermann’s brain that used to control her right arm and hand before she lost control of everything below the neck. Jan even made a splash online that year when the researchers posted a video of her eating a chocolate bar with the robotic limb. To be able to read Jan’s thoughts, the scientists had her watch animations of hand-arm movements and instructed her to imagine doing them. They then used the brain patterns detected during the process to program the arm, so that it moves accordingly.

Now that Jan’s tests are done, the scientists are looking for more volunteers in an effort to further improve the technology. They still need to fix an issue that causes it to stall when it’s holding an object, as well as to find a way to turn it into a wireless, wheelchair-mounted device, if they want it to be useful outside a lab. Of course, they aren’t the only research team working on a bionic limb controlled by thoughts alone. BrainGate is developing a very similar limb, while Duke University scientists have created a mind-controlled exoskeleton that Juliana Pinto used to open the World Cup in June.

For more and video:


Santa Clause came to George Town, Cayman Islands, for Scuba-Luminations

Santa Clause came to town, George Town, Grand Cayman to be precise, onboard a boat being pulled by underwater reindeer.

This was the annual Scuba-Luminations lit up the sea on Tuesday (16) night as excited children packed into Rackam’s Bar on the waterfront waiting patiently for the man in red.

And when he arrived to pose for pictures and enjoy a medley of Christmas carols there were many smiles and cheers.

The event, organised by Lucy Brewer, was to raise funds for the Cayman Islands Humane Society.

As well as cash donations, residents also brought much needed supplies for the shelter including dog food and toys.


Passenger who got sick of waiting to get off plane deploys emergency slide

By Benjamin Zhang From Business Insider

Last week, a passenger on a China Eastern Airlines plane deployed the emergency slide after the aircraft landed at Sanya Phoenix International Airport, off China’s southern coast.

The passenger’s excuse for his actions?

He wanted to “get off the plane quicker,” the Daily Mail reported.

The flight, MU2331, originated in Xi’an in northwestern China. It had just landed at the resort city of Sanya and taxied to a parking slot, when a passenger opened the door just behind the right wing of the Airbus A321.

The incident caused the aircraft to be delayed for two hours.

According to Sohu, the economic damages, including the cost of replacing the slide, amounted to roughly $16,000.

It is unclear if the passenger actually made it down the slide before being apprehended by the authorities — or if China Eastern plans to bill the passenger for his indiscretions.

Due to the design of airplane doors, it is impossible to open them while the aircraft is pressurized in flight.

However, when the plane is taxiing or parked, they can be opened.

Usually, when a plane is in service, the cabin crew will arm the slides and set them to deploy automatically when the doors open. When the plane pulls up to the gate, the cabin crew will then set the doors to “manual,” which overrides the automatic deployment.

The passenger in this case obviously popped the hatch before the cabin crew had the chance to switch the door to manual mode.

It’s unknown at this point how the passenger will be punished. However, after a recent spate of poor behavior by Chinese airline passengers, the government has vowed to severely punish transgressors who tarnish the nation’s reputation.

For more:


Harneys supports Cayman Islands Marathon

On Sunday 7 December, more than 1,250 runners took to the roads of Grand Cayman to take part in the 2014 Cayman Islands Marathon. Harneys showed its support by sponsoring the event for the fourth consecutive year, as a Mile Sponsor, and hosted a Hawaiian themed water station.

Isidora Eden of Harneys Cayman’s CSR team said, “For some of our staff the 4 a.m. start is nearly as challenging as the race, but it’s worth it! The marathon is a wonderful event with such a fabulous atmosphere.”

Four members of Harneys’ staff, Joss Morris, Louise Plowright, Elaine McGriele and Carolynn Vivian formed the relay team titled “We Thought They Said Rum” and came an impressive 26th, finishing in under 3 hours 55 minutes.


Conyers advises on establishment of Caymans securitisation structure for Manitowoc

Conyers Dill & Pearman has advised on the establishment of a Cayman Islands securitisation structure for Manitowoc Company. This was the 5th Amended and Restated Receivables Purchase Agreement.

The Manitowoc Company is a multi-industry, capital goods manufacturer with more than 100 manufacturing and service facilities in 27 countries. It is recognised as one of the world’s largest providers of lifting equipment for the global construction industry, including lattice-boom cranes, tower cranes, mobile telescopic cranes and boom trucks. Manitowoc also is one of the world’s leading innovators and manufacturers of commercial foodservice equipment serving the ice, beverage, refrigeration, food prep and cooking needs of restaurants, convenience stores, hotels, healthcare and institution applications.

The structure was designed to effectively securitise its German and Canadian accounts receivables. Kevin Butler, head of Conyers’ Cayman office, advised on the matter, working alongside Quarles & Brady and Mayer Brown.


Cayman islands Customs receive sniffer dog from Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office

The Cayman Islands customs K-9 unit has received a seven-year-old Beagle mix called Blaze courtesy of a donation from he Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in Arizona State Blaze will help with the detection of illegal narcotics. The beagle arrived on Saturday 13 December with K-9 Officer, Deputy Sheriff Joe McLemore and Ioana Oancea from Arizona who handed over Blaze in a short ceremony at Customs Headquarters increasing the number of dogs in the unit to five. The dog which has a track record sniffing out heroin, marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamines with ease will work both the cruise port and the airport on Grand Cayman with his new handler Tate McFarlane.

Malachi Powery the supervisor of the K-9 unit when he was on holiday in Arizona started the ball rolling to get Blaze when he contacted his counterpart Officer Mike Milseps in the sheriff’s office, with whom he had attended a bloodhound training course. The transfer had been in the works since June of this year.

Collector of Customs, Samantha Bennett in thanking County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the Deputy Sheriff for the donation, said, “We are delighted that Blaze is here and adding to our K-9 detection capabilities.”

McLemore said his office would next attempt to donate a bloodhound.


Cayman 123 Travel raises the bar with Digicel More

Cayman 123 Travel is an independent travel agency based in Grand Cayman, offering a wide variety of travel services including accommodation, air travel bookings, car rentals, corporate travel, cruises and vacation packages.

This year, Cayman 123 Travel CEO, Theresa Chin, took her business to the next level when she launched her re-designed website – which was optimised for mobile viewing – along with the first local travel app in the Cayman Islands.

Following the launch of the app, Cayman 123 Travel faced the challenge of generating awareness and driving downloads. Theresa used traditional advertising channels to promote the app but found that it wasn’t delivering the desired results. With a specific target market – smartphone users – she needed a channel that would allow her to target the right people in the right place and at the right time directly.

Digicel More delivered a solution which allowed Cayman 123 Travel to target the right people, at the right time and in the right place – a feature that no other advertising medium could deliver – by sending the unique app link directly to the customers’ phone. This offered them a simple and convenient way to download the app, while providing real time reporting on all downloads.

Speaking about the success of the Digicel More campaign, Theresa explains; “The launch of the smartphone app for Cayman 123 Travel has been a great success. I needed a cost effective way to promote my product and reach my target market and Digicel’s mobile advertising solution, allowed me to do just that. Thanks to Digicel More, I was able to target thousands of new and existing customers in a very unique way. No other advertising medium gave me this ability with the immediate impact we saw.”

Digicel Group Head of Mobile Advertising, Mandy Kruger, said; “We are happy that Cayman 123 Travel is seeing a tremendous increase in customer traffic thanks to the Digicel More mobile advertising solution which encourages customers to access its services by downloading their travel app.”

There were almost 800 downloads of the app which had a positive impact on brand awareness and increased sales for Cayman 123 Travel. Theresa continued; “We are still getting new business and more enquiries every day since our implementation of Digicel More’s solution and our customers are happy to have a new way to connect with us.”


Secret launches bug bounty program for hackers who find vulnerabilities in its app

By Ryan Lawler From Tech Crunch

Secret, which has fast become everyone’s favorite way to share “anonymish” thoughts with friends and strangers alike, has launched a new program that is designed to find — and squash — bugs in its mobile app before being exposed to the general public.

The launch of the program comes less than a day-and-a-half after a photo began making the rounds on Secret and on Twitter, which appeared to link a user’s email address to posts that they had shared through the app. The Secret team not only squashed the bug almost immediately, but also announced plans to launch the bug bounty for hackers playing around with the app.

And, well, here it is.

Saying that it is “committed to working with this community to verify, reproduce, and respond to legitimate reported vulnerabilities,” the team is asking for researchers to participate in the process of identifying those vulnerabilities and working with it to close them.

In doing so, Secret is asking for hackers to “make a good faith effort” to not violate user privacy, destroy data, or degrade its service. That includes not accessing or violating any data that does not belong to the user, or sharing it with the public before it’s resolved.

The launch comes after hacks and attacks on other apps which promise anonymity or ephemerality that expose user information. In late December, a hack of Snapchat exposed information connected to 4.6 million of its users. It took more than a week for Snapchat to apologize for that incident and release further security features in an effort to ensure a similar incident doesn’t occur again.

For Secret, the whole idea behind the program is to take a proactive approach to finding and eliminating any potential issues in the app that could expose users’ identity or link secrets to them. That protection is necessary in an app in which users can share what could be sensitive information anonymously with each other.

For now, Secret says it’s hoping to “work with great people and learn from others” while closing any bugs and promises gifts to those who participate.

For more:


Montserrat is now a member of the Eastern Caribbean Hydrographic Working Group


Montserrat has been elected a member of the Eastern Caribbean Hydrographic Working Group.

Montserrat’s position was established by the recent Ocean Governance Meeting which convened in Castries, St. Lucia

The Castries forum brought together stakeholders including CARICOM member territories, to share with the OECS member States some of the issues and challenges associated with boundary delimitation and the process of reaching agreements.

The cost of Montserrat’s participation in the Eastern Caribbean Hydrographic Survey to be undertaken this year, will be covered by the UK Hydrographic Office (UKHO) support of EC$576,876, plus the Economic and Legal Section of the Commonwealth Secretariat (ComSec) support of EC$160,000.

It now means that the overall framework for ocean governance in Montserrat needs to be upgraded.

Fisheries are only a sub-sector of the wider Ocean Governance agenda.

Montserrat will need to negotiate boundaries with Venezuela, St Kitts & Nevis, Antigua and Barbuda and possibly Dominica.

It is anticipated that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) will conclude these negotiations on behalf of Montserrat following on from the recommendations of the island’s Ocean Governance Committee.

The local governance Committee comprises Chief Fisheries Officer Alwyn Ponteen, Attorney at Law Sheree Jemmotte-Rodney and Director of regional Affairs and Trade Claude Hogan.

The Committee is expected to draw on other stakeholders to include the Royal Montserrat Police Service (RMPS), the Montserrat Port Authority, Department of the Environment and the Montserrat Customs and revenue Service (MCRS).

There is now a need for Montserrat to upgrade its capacity in Ocean Governance and declare its 12-mile territorial sea with a view to also negotiating its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

The process is expected to begin with direct negotiations with OECS neighbours taking into account boundaries that have been concluded with Guadeloupe (British with the French on behalf of Montserrat).

For more on this story go to:


Farmed Shrimp are Killing the Ocean

By s.e. smith Care 2

I’ll be the first to tell you that I love a good shrimp alfredo, shrimp pad thai, or tempura shrimp. Unfortunately, we all may need to evaluate our love for these tasty crustaceans in the future, because there’s some ominous news emerging about shrimp farms — approximately 30% of the seafood we import is shrimp — and it’s time to get serious about whether we want to eat good seafood…or bad. And I’m not talking about the seafood that makes you crouch over the toilet all night versus the kind that’s been handled right.

Sustainability is a growing concern with seafood as the industry gets larger and consumers eat more. The world’s oceans provide a bounty of food, but fisheries as well as fish farms need to be managed responsibly to ensure that future generations will be able to take advantage of them, and to protect the environment. Some fish are so unsustainable that wild-caught specimens aren’t good choices if you care about the environment (such as the orange roughy) and farmed shrimp is among the farmed specimens that isn’t a good idea to eat because of the environmental costs.

What are those costs, exactly?

Habitat loss

A great deal of the shrimp we buy comes from various regions of Asia, as well as South America. To meet the demand for shrimp from the United States, farmers work in coastal waters to produce shrimp in pens — and the way shrimp farms are constructed and expanded is by removing natural mangrove swamps. These amazing natural phenomena provide an important home for numerous plants and animals who rely on the shelter of the mangroves to survive along the coastline in a truly unique ecosystem. Without mangroves, there’s nowhere to go.

Loss of flood control and environmental barriers

Speaking of mangroves, those trees offer another important benefit to the environment. They create a formidable natural flood barrier which traps tidal surges and high waters, preventing them from rushing inland. Just as the loss of coastal wetlands in the United States has made flooding more severe, the loss of mangrove swamps has made communities near fish farms more vulnerable to flooding.

Nutrient pollution and hypoxia

All those shrimp need to eat, and they need to poop. We don’t like talking about poop either, but it’s a fact of life. The waters around shrimp farms are crowded with nutrient-rich material, which might sound like a good thing (everybody likes nutrients, right?) but it’s actually not. It encourages the growth of algae and other organisms that disturb the natural balance of things in the ocean, which does two things that aren’t good for other organisms. The resource-hungry invaders create a situation called hypoxia, where oxygen levels fall in the ocean and make it impossible to support some organisms, and they also create opacity in the ocean, limiting the available light for fish and other species. This fundamentally changes the environment around shrimp farms, and not for the better.

Labor violations

As if the environmental problems weren’t enough, farmed shrimp come with significant labor violations at nearly every stage of production. Workers are underpaid and exploited in a working environment that can be dirty, harsh and very unpleasant. Because it’s difficult to track shrimp back to their source, you have no guarantee that your shrimp comes from a company that complies with labor laws and treats workers fairly — it’s possible your shrimp scampi may be served with a side of human rights violations.

What’s a shrimp-lover to do? Go wild caught, but there’s a catch. Wild-caught shrimp doesn’t come with this laundry list of environmental problems, but it does come with another issue. Ships that trawl for shrimp tend to have a large bycatch of unwanted species, including critters we prefer alive and in the ocean, not gasping on the deck of a fishing trawler.

You want trapped shrimp, and if your fishmonger isn’t sure where your seafood came from (by law in many regions they are required to label seafood with sources), pass on the shrimp. Pick up some mahi mahi, wahoo (yes really, also known as ono), or scallops instead. Or take a walk on the wild side and go vegetarian for the night.

For more on this story go to:



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