The PNM regime’s disastrous handling of the economic emergency and vaccine rollout is creating unprecedented pain and suffering throughout the country, says the United National Congress which is pleading with the Government to hold urgent discussions with economic stakeholders to create a rescue plan for Trinidad and Tobago in the current financial abyss.

The UNC is heartened at recent public declarations by private sector leaders about the calamitous state of the economy, with many collapsed businesses, growing unemployment and mounting hardship. The admission of an economic crisis by Gregory Aboud, President of Downtown Merchants and Owners Association follows similar dire revelations by the UNC over the past year.

With the national economy in freefall, many businesses – especially small and medium-sized enterprises – are crumbling and throwing vulnerable workers on the breadline, said Opposition Member of Parliament for Mayaro, Rushton Paray.

“Trinidad and Tobago is in the midst of its worst economic crisis in at least four decades, and the pathetic PNM administration is clueless in implementing effective solutions. Mr. Aboud is correct in stating that small businesses, including those in the distribution sector, are “being threatened with extinction” and that “the data is bad.”

His recommendation that initiatives be taken to protect businesses in the “economic pandemic” is similar to that repeatedly made by the UNC. Mr. Aboud is also right in insisting on leadership by the government and consultations with the private sector. The government’s gross failure in implementing a national Covid-19 vaccine programme is also a blow to the business community as it is to the health of nationals.”

According to Paray, Gabriel Faria, Chief Executive Officer of the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce, is spot on when he states that several sectors face permanent demise because of business restrictions and extended closure of the national borders.

“The constant excuses by the government for the absence of vaccines are intolerable and outrageous. Mr. Faria summed it up appropriately when he stated that “the role of leadership in any environment is not to explain the reason for failure but to change the outcome” said Paray.

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