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The SBA’s yearly Global Entrepreneurship and Development Index was released this month and had some surprising results for both the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

The index, according to the executive summary released with the report:

. . . builds on and improves earlier measures by capturing quantitative and qualitative aspects of entrepreneurship. It measures entrepreneurial performance in 71 countries over three sub-indexes, 14 pillars, and 31 individual and institutional variables. The United States appears among the top entrepreneurial economies and ranks third on the GEDI.

It has long been held that the U.S. is the land of opportunity, especially for budding businesspeople, so this new finding brings a shocker to our country.

But perhaps, just as shocking is Puerto Rico’s rise to number #17. Read the rest of this entry »

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On September 16th and 17th, the National Puerto Rican Coalition (no affiliation) sent a letters to the USDOJ and the SEC requesting an investigation into a deal between the foreign-owned Diageo and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

A quote from the letter sent to Representative Velasquez’s office on September 17th states:

This deal is unprecedented in that it effectively transfers U.S. tax dollars directly to a foreign company, with Diageo slated to receive almost half of all Cover Over revenues generated by the sale of rum produced at the facility. The almost $6 billion in direct payments over 60 years for only 40 jobs is equivalent to $2.5 million per job per year.

We applaud and support the National Puerto Rican Coalition in its continued effort to educate legislators on the untenable deal and persuade government authorities to look into practices which encourage corruption and misappropriation of U.S. Taxpayers’ money.

The letter to Congresswoman Velasquez can be found here.

How did an agreement to direct $6 billion to a foreign liquor conglomerate in exchange for 40 jobs get Congressional consent and Administration approval?

as posted at prnewswire.com:

WASHINGTON, Sept. 14 /PRNewswire/ — The National Puerto Rican Coalition (NPRC) will hold a press conference on Thursday, September 16, at the National Press Club to discuss the organization’s requests to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to investigate a deal between Diageo, a UK-based liquor conglomerate, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“Diageo has structured an unusual and highly suspect agreement with the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands,” said NPRC Chairman Miguel Lausell. “Through this ‘deal’ more than $6 billion in U.S. tax funds will be assigned directly to Diageo over the next 60 years to assist in the creation of 40 jobs. Read the rest of this entry »

If you are from Puerto Rico, or have any ties to the island at all, you know about Diageo.  What was once considered a proud corporate partner to the island, contributing almost 200 good-paying jobs to the economy and millions in revenues and taxes, has become quite the pariah in the eyes of Puerto Ricans everywhere.

The issue revolves around Diageo’s (a British-owned liquor conglomerate) decision to move its operations from the U.S. territory to another nearby territory, The U.S. Virgin Islands, all at U.S. Taxpayers’ expense. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Alan Bromley – Staff Writer New Patriot Journal

Congress Gives U.K. Rum Manufacturer a $2.7 Billion U.S. Taxpayer Funded Gift

Wrapped inside the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) lies a provision that gives a British rum-making corporation, Diageo, a tax break of $2.7 billion to move their facilities from Puerto Rico (where they resided for 30 years) to the U.S. Virgin Islands – and Puerto Rican politicians and activists are up in arms, finding Congress unwilling to make the tax laws comparable in both places, and even unwilling to be transparent about which politicians in Congress, if any, may have benefitted from the unusual tax break.

But they do know that embattled New York Congressman Charlie Rangel (D) as (past) chairman of the Ways & Means Committee, refused Read the rest of this entry »

August 30, 2010, Washington, D.C. – Amidst seemingly endless negative news from the economic sector, Puerto Rico recently developed a project named “Via Verde,” which aims to provide a much-needed boost to the Puerto Rican economy. The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce supports the project, whose goal is to construct a natural gas pipeline to distribute an alternative form of energy production throughout the island, as a means to spur economic development.

Although some costs of living in Puerto Rico, such as housing and land costs, are lower than on the U.S. mainland, energy costs have risen to almost double the average U.S. household costs. One of the Governor’s and other legislators’ most important objectives has been to lower those costs and bring much-needed relief to a population who already has an average income lower than any U.S. state. Read the rest of this entry »

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