GMSA lauds Budget 2021 as transformative
- says will strengthen the manufacturing and services sector
The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) congratulates the Government on the presentation by Dr Ashni Singh, Minister in the Office of the President with responsibility for finance, of the much-anticipated Budget for 2021.
The GMSA recognizes that the $383.1 billion budget, deemed the largest in the history of Guyana, is not financed from any new taxes, and in keeping with earlier commitments that there will not be any new taxes in the budget.
The Association commends the Government for crafting a budget that is visionary, comprehensive and spans every sector of the economy. Budget 2021 will help bring about the much-needed impetus for growth and development. Specifically, for the manufacturing and services sector, and the growth and development of small businesses, the GMSA notes that the budget measures presented were in alignment with many of the proposals and recommendations the GMSA submitted to Government for consideration.
Among the many measures presented by the Finance Minister, the GMSA welcomes:
▪ Government’s commitment to establishing new industrial estates;
▪ The $6 billion to be spent on enhancing infrastructure;
▪ The provision of an incubator that will help agro-processors and the enablement of manufacturers to access Business Incubator Centres;
▪ The allocation of $25.6 billion for the building and upgrading of roads and bridges country-wide;
▪ The allocation of $135 million for the procurement of the single window system;
▪ The renewed focus on the LCDS and investments in renewable energy projects;
▪ The investment of $832 million in agricultural infrastructure including agro-processing facilities;
▪ The injection of $250 million to replenish the Small Business Bureau;
▪ The development of the National E-Commerce Strategy;
▪ The reduction of duty on industrial-grade cement from 15% to 5%;
▪ Zero Rating of VAT on locally produced pre-stressed concrete; locally fabricated mild steel beams for construction; and locally manufactured roofing and PVC products;
▪ The restoration of the VAT zero-rated on basic food items and household necessities;
▪ The establishment of the Universality Fund from which modern telecommunication services can be funded;
▪ Investment in research and development and skills training of the population;
▪ Extending the loan ceiling at commercial banks for low-income housing loans from 10 to 12 million which will serve as a stimulus to the housing sector; and
▪ The reduction in water tariffs by 5%
These are critical measures which build on those from Budget 2020 and will further stimulate the economy. The GMSA looks forward to continued collaboration with the Government as we work together to implement measures for the benefit of local manufacturers and services businesses.