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Cabinet news: Decisions on trade licenses, medical waste, and national census

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Posted: Friday, August 20, 2021. 2:37 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: While COVID-19 dominated this week’s meeting of the National Executive as it has for so long, other decisions were made and announced.

Cabinet gave its approval to make the necessary amendments to the current Trade License Regime to complete the Trade License Reform and prepare the necessary legislative amendments. There have been complaints from businesses that the regime is not structured and haphazard and so businesses have been moving out of places like Belize City into smaller villages like Ladyville, for example.

There will be an enactment of Medical Waste Regulations to tackle the long-standing human, health and environmental challenge concerning the disposal of medical waste to be implemented and enforced by the Department of the Environment. Instances of waste being simply dumped on the scrap heap and not properly incinerated have previously been reported.

The Statistical Institute has the go-ahead to begin preparing for the conduct of the May 2022 Population and Housing Census and to provide the necessary funding to conduct the census. The exercise, usually held every decade, was postponed from 2020 and then 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Finally, Cabinet approved the lifting of the ban on visas for nationals of India and Bangladesh and requested that the Attorney General draft the appropriate statutory instrument. This ban had been placed earlier this year when India was suffering from a spike in COVID-19 cases despite donating a supply of vaccines to Belize and the Caribbean region.

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