Legislation is being presented to Parliament on Friday to facilitate an increase in the total value of tax-free savings bond for the purchase of HDC houses —to $3 billion—which will be part of the upcoming 2020 Budget.
Government officials confirmed the bond proposal will be part of the budget which will be presented by Finance Minister Colm Imbert on October 7. To facilitate this, Parliament will debate the Government savings bond (Amendment) 2019 Bill on Friday.
The five clause bill seeks to amend the Government Savings Bonds Act, Chap. 71:41 to provide for tax-free Government Bonds to be issued in respect of the purchase of Housing Development Corporation houses and to increase the total value of bonds issued under the act.
It’s proposed to increase the total value of bonds that can be issued under the act from $2 billion to $3 billion.
UNC whip David Lee said yesterday that UNC’s Budget consultations with nationwide constituencies—which started a several months ago— raised four main points of concern.
“Consensus is that people are concerned about crime, high cost of living, workers being laid off and feeling hopeless—we are waiting to see how the budget addresses this,” Lee added.
The Opposition believes the Government will present an “election” budget because of the upcoming Local Government polls—due after November—and a general election due next year.
T&T Chamber CEO Gabriel Faria said the Chamber, which met last week on Budget 2020, is hoping to see a number of innovations to improve the business climate including addressing the issue of overdue VAT refunds— estimated at $6 billion—mobilising capital to fund small/medium businesses and young entrepreneurs, improving ease of doing business through technology and developing a long term strategic plan for Tobago tourism.
LINK ORIGINAL: The Trinidad Guardian