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Finance Minister, Colm Imbert, Presents A 51.8 Billion Dollar Fiscal Package For 2018/2019.

by | Oct 1, 2018

  Minister of Finance, Colm Imbert, says the government plans to spend 51.776 billion dollars for the fiscal year 2018\2019.

Last year the figure was $50.5 billion dollars.

He explains that the national budget is set on an oil price of US$65 per barrel and a gas price of US$2.75 per mmbtu.

Minister Imbert notes that the fiscal deficit for 2019 is expected to narrow to 4.052 billion or two point five per cent of Gross Domestic Product.

He made the announcement during the presentation of the fiscal package in the House of Representatives this afternoon.

Other highlights of the budget include an immediate increase in the cost of super fuel from three dollars and ninety-seven cents to four dollars and ninety-seven cents.

The cost of diesel and Premium fuel, as well as LPG and cooking gas, will remain the same.

Arrangements will be put in place to allow police officers to use non-lethal weapons and body cameras. Focus will also be placed on improving technology within the service.

Minister Imbert also gave insight into the financial benefits for former Petrotrin workers.

The Tobago House of Assembly has been allocated 2.29 billion dollars as compared to 2.19 billion last year.

In terms of allocations to the various ministries, Education tops the list for a second straight year with 7.3 billion dollars, followed by National Security 6.1 billion, Health 5.6 billion, Works and Transport 3.5 billion and Public Utilities 3.1 billion.

He said the Point Fortin and Arima hospitals are scheduled to open in September 2019, while another hospital at Sangre Grande is in the works, at an estimated cost of $850 million.

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