18% annual flat rate introduced by way of Financial Administration and Audit (Amendment) Bill

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The Financial Administration and Audit (Amendment) Bill 2016 which seeks to provide for a simple interest rate of 18 percent per annum, instead of the current Bank of Guyana market published rates was passed tonight (Friday January 6, 2017) in the National Assembly.

The Bill seeks to repeal Section 6B (3) of the Act.

Finance Minister, Winston Jordan clarified that Government’s use of this interest rate in no way means that the Government has no confidence in the Bank of Guyana, as suggested by Opposition Member of Parliament, Irfaan Ali.

The Minister noted that there is nothing that says Government has to be wedded to the BoG’s interest rate.

Ali questioned the minister’s use of the 18 percent flat rate given the fact that the Central Bank’s rate fluctuates, in this regard, Jordan noted that Government by introducing this rate will be making things simpler.

The Opposition MP also raised concerns with the flat rate questioning what will happen when the BoG’s rate drops below that 18 percent.

Meantime, according to former Attorney General and PPP/C MP, Anil Nandlall the Bill seeks to amend a law (Financial Administration and Audit Act) which does not exist.  But, this contention was challenged by the Finance Minister who maintained that the Financial Administration and Audit (Amendment) Bill 2016 offers a true reflection of the law.

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