Friday 4 December, 2020

T&T Chamber concerned about businesses that remain closed

The Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce has expressed disappointment that several business remain closed.

On Saturday, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley announced the relaxation of some COVID-19 restrictions.

However, he indicated that in-house dining at bars and restaurants remain suspended.

The Chamber issued a statement following the Prime Minister's media conference, in which it stated its concerns about the impact of the continued closure of certain business.

It said: "Today, the Government has taken some steps they deem as cautious. They have reopened additional sectors with reduced customer densities and limited services. The Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce remains very concerned about the minimal positive impact this will have on the economy."

The T&T Chamber said it was disappointed that its recommendations were not accepted even after the submissions of detailed protocols by various sectors to the Ministry of Health.

It said: "We indicated, our willingness to meet to discuss any additional measures required to alleviate any apprehensions to facilitate reopening.While some sectors have been reopened, there are many businesses in the food and beverage sector, among others, who remain severely affected by the full or partial closure, some for over 7 months."

The T&T Chamber added the government should target the appropriate fiscal support for tax compliant businesses due to the "debilitating impact this is having on them".

It said: "The impact is not just on these businesses but the ripple effect it can have across our economy from landlords, banks, suppliers, employees, crime, mental health and domestic violence. It is a challenging financial environment for many businesses. It is therefore crucial that the Government target the appropriate fiscal support for tax compliant businesses due to the debilitating impact this is having on them."

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