Finance Minister Colm Imbert says he will be asking the banks to waive their service fee for changing the $100 bills, especially for elderly citizens, but noted that the state cannot compel them to do so by law.
The minister told Parliament this morning that under the current law the central bank is empowered to fix bank charges and fees with respect to loans, deposits and credit finances, but it does not apply to over the counter transactions.
He said they may need to consider changing that.
The United National Congress has made it clear that the party did not file any lawsuit seeking an injunction to block the sale of the Pointe-a-Pierre Refinery.
The political party has issued an official statement, in which it explains that concerned citizens are the ones who’ve filed the constitutional claim.
The lawsuit has been filed against the Chairman of the Joint Select Committee on Energy Affairs—Finance Minister Colm Imbert—over his failure to convene a meeting for close to two years.
The United National Congress (UNC) is seeking an injunction temporarily blocking the sale of Petrotrin’s Pointe-a-Pierre refinery.
The party, through its former senator Wayne Sturge, filed the injunction application yesterday as part of a constitutional motion lawsuit over the failure of Finance Minister Colm Imbert to hold a Joint Select Committee (JSC) on Energy Affairs for the past 19 months.
Circumstances “permitting,” there will be no cuts in the CEPEP labour force or contractors, said Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein yesterday.
Hosein said if the need arises, it may be reviewed, “but as of today there will be no cuts”. He stressed this during yesterday’s Standing Finance Committee scrutiny of the 2020 Budget.
Opposition Member of Parliament, Dr Roodal Moonilal, is calling on the Finance Minister to clarify the wage increase for both CEPEP and URP workers.
During the Finance Minister’s 2020 Budget Presentation last Monday, Government explained that these workers' wage increase takes into account the new cap for the Minimum Wage.
However, Dr Moonilal says this explanation has raised more questions than provided answers.
In her opening salvos of her response to the Finance Minister’s Budget Presentation… Opposition Leader Kamla Persad Bissessar S.C., has described the 2020 Budget as an insult to the poor.
She says government should call the general election now.
According to Opposition Leader, the Finance Minister did little more than throw crumbs at the most vulnerable in the society.
The Opposition Leader argues that government’s provisions have meant that CEPEP’s allocation was the lowest in years.
The political leader of the Congress of the People says Monday’s budget failed to address urgent measures needed to transform the country's economy.
According to Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan, the fiscal measures announced only appear to achieve short term political gains, as opposed to sustainable development.
She said the government's macroeconomic position was out of sync with reality.
The Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries (TTCSI) is calling for more details on Government's proposed interest bearing bonds for registered VAT businesses to meet arrears.
On Monday, the Finance Minister said as a solution to settle $4.5 billion in VAT refunds owed to businessmen, Government is offering $3 billion bonds for a period of five years, with an interest rate of 1.5 percent per annum.
Finance Minister Colm Imbert is once again hitting back at economists.
Speaking at a PNM rally last evening in Barataria, Minister Imbert says the government has collected more money in tax than initially projected but the economists are not accepting the figures.
Last month, Minister Imbert criticised five economists saying they were unfair and biased when commenting on how the government is managing the economy.
And on the energy front, the Finance Minister says that while gas production is up, the government is yet to see the returns.
The Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturers' Association says it is extremely pleased by the Minister of Finance's pronouncements yesterday at the post-Cabinet briefing that strong consideration will be given to afford manufacturers a higher priority as it relates to access to foreign exchange.
"Such news is welcomed as foreign exchange within the manufacturing community is critical to our operations and export growth mandate," the TTMA said in a statement.