President says gov’t cushioning effects of increase cost of living due to global price increases

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While there has been a global increase in commodity pricing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, President Dr. Irfaan Ali has assured citizens that the government is constantly working on ways in which it can offer more social and economic support to cushion the effects.

Dr. Ali said the government has already managed to cushion the negative effects from directly affecting consumers by removing and lowering a number of taxes and the provision of a range of social services.

“Managing a country is not only about internalities but the external variables that impact our economies.

“For example, the rising cost of international transportation and logistics, grains, other food supplies, commodities and shortage of chips for the supply of electronics on the international market, but notwithstanding these global challenges, the government is actively working on a menu of measures to cushion the effects they will have on Guyanese,” the Head-of-State said on Thursday on the sidelines of an event held at State House.

That assistance will be dictated by revenue flows and the positioning of the local economy in the coming months. He made the promise even as the government is still assessing the effects of the recent flooding which has significantly eroded infrastructure in several regions.

“As assessment is being completed at this stage.

“I want to assure the Guyanese people that once the fiscal space is found we will have no hesitation in bringing more help to the Guyanese people,” Dr. Ali said.

Asked about a timeline, the President told reporters that “there are many demands” and said, “I would not want to confine myself to a timeframe.”

“You have to understand context… we are coming out of the worst flood that Brazil and Suriname also experienced… it greatly affected our productive capacity in the agriculture sector and the second thing is that we are now facing other consequences of pandemic,” Dr. Ali said.

He told reporters that attention will also have to be given to national infrastructure, particularly those in the hinterland, destroyed by the flooding.

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