In her recent address to the nation Prime Minister Mia Mottley indicated a real discussion will take place next week between the government and social partnership as it pertains to how the country will have to support workers displaced in a post COVID period. The idea of pandemic bonds has been floated.
Commonsense Barbadians understand the pandemic will force a change to the way WE have to do business today, tomorrow and in the future. It is important to define WE – it means all actors operating in civil society INCLUDING the government.
Leadership is about leading by example. There is no better time than to illustrate the idea of leading from the front than for the Prime Minister and her very large Cabinet to take a salary cut.
The blogmaster joins with many looking forward to participate in a sensible national discussion about the best way forward in a COVID world. It makes no sense ordinary people asked to make a sacrifice and OTHERS are allowed to operate business as usual.
Cutting salaries will not result in a significant savings in the context of the national budget BUT it is not about that is it.
Forced savings discussion could help save jobs
In an effort to keep job losses to a minimum, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley will next week start a dialogue with her financial advisors regarding the possibility of introducing forced savings for public officers.
The Prime Minister said the new measure, through which some public officers would have part of their salary kept in the form of bonds, would play a significant role in helping provide Government with more fiscal space as it continued to deal with the debilitating economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking on Thursday night after consultations with the Social Partnership at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Mottley said forced savings could lead to hundreds of public servants keeping their jobs, even though there was no plan to start sending home any.
“If we have to look to avoid forced layoffs in Government, then we can look at a form of forced savings. We will have that conversation next week, as we want to give everyone an opportunity. We have to cut expenditure, even in spite of the fiscal space we have. We are in a comfortable position, but we want to ensure we have safe work for safe people.”
Mottley said the International Monetary Fund had recommended to its board in early June that Barbados be allowed to move from a six per cent primary surplus to one per cent.
“It will give us at least $550 million in elbow room,” she told the media.
She said Government’s main aim was to slowly get the country back to a state of normalcy. (BA)