Breadbasket Cost Increases-Nassau Guardian

The government has approved higher prices for some breadbaskets, as many Bahamans are already working on higher living costs.

Cooking oil, corned beef, evaporated milk, flour, margarine.

The price increase came into effect yesterday. I don’t know the exact number, but economic minister Michael Harkitis said prices rose on the “cent problem.”

“If retailers of price-controlled goods experience rising costs, for example if it costs more to import something, they need to get permission from consumer issues to adjust the price.” He said when asked why the price went up.

“That is, all they have to do is present a document showing that the cost of importing these things has increased, then apply a fixed margin and get approval for the new highest price. It means that you need to.

“That is, the process is that they create the application. They get approval. The minister has to sign it and we have to inform the public that this has happened, so we You have to publish it in the official bulletin, and then you put it in Congress too. “

The Bahamas, like many parts of the world, has been suffering from rising consumer prices since the end of last year.

In March, the Central Bank of the Bahama said domestic consumer price inflation rose to 2.3% in the fourth quarter of 2021, up from 0.2% registered in the same period in 2020.

The International Monetary Fund predicts that consumer prices in the Bahamas will rise 7.3 percent this year.

Rupert Roberts, owner of the Super Value grocery chain, said Nassau Guardian Yesterday, “It’s a really chaotic world and we’re fighting it every day.”

Roberts talks to Harkitis before Christmas and the government considers what it means to impose a value-added tax (VAT) on the breadbasket given rising costs globally. He said he needed it.

“He asked me how long it would last and when it would level off,” Roberts recalled.

“I told him I think the rest of the year will continue to grow. Of course, I didn’t know anything about Russia at the time. I know that the two largest cooking oil countries, Russia and Ukraine, will go out of business. I didn’t know. Fuel, cooking oil, and of course wheat and flour, so it’s worse than I told him. “

Roberts said he hopes inflation will slow by the end of the year.

“I’m worried that things will continue to grow this year, and I hope things will level off, the world will straighten, and supply chains, manufacturing, and fares will begin to level off, which is an exaggerated guess. “He said.

Soaring prices at grocery stores and gas stations keep salaries unchanged, making it difficult for many to earn income.

For some Bahamans, the government’s decision to reintroduce VAT to breadbasket items in January is an additional burden, even though VAT for other items and services has been reduced from 12% to 10%. I am complaining that I have added.

In a statement yesterday, the government’s announcement that Shannendon Cartwright, deputy leader of the Free National Movement, was approved to raise prices in multiple breadbaskets, said thousands of poor, working, middle-class people. He said he continued to emphasize the magnitude of the Bahamian struggle of the class.

“It further emphasizes the urgent need to eliminate VAT in the breadbasket,” Cartwright said.

“The government remains rebellious amid rising food costs in a relentless and historic inflationary environment, and the value-added tax on the breadbasket remains here, providing the Bahamian people with the necessary relief. I’m refusing to do that.

“The plight of the Bahamian people continues to be challenged by the more ominous cloud of rising consumer prices, the tighter global supply chain, and fuel costs currently rising to an average of $ 6.30 per gallon.”

However, Halkitis again defended the VAT decision yesterday.

“We live in some extraordinary times,” he said.

“This inflation is caused by global events and is indignant by recent events with global food supply disruptions. Our position remains unchanged. The best policy is a flat rate without a minimum tax exemption. Is to impose VAT on.

“That’s the best bet. It’s been tried, researched, and it’s left. The best bet is to maintain a simplified system and help those who need it. Otherwise. If you do, you weaken your system. “

Harkitis said there isn’t much the government can do to help people as prices continue to rise.

He said he hopes the rising costs will stabilize soon.

“There is a war that disrupts energy and food supplies,” Halkitis said.

“Many of these things are out of our control. People can see and say,” Well, this country is doing this, “or” that country is doing it. ” I know there are, but we are in a very different situation. “ Breadbasket Cost Increases-Nassau Guardian

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