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2021-2022 National Budget: A Bold And Decisive Budget


The astute allocation of coffers to key critical areas
and targeted policy incentives announced in the 2021-2022
National Budget will be the conner stone in achieving
socio-economic stability – helping Fijians reclaim the
economy.

The Consumer Council of Fiji (CCoF) views the
2021-2022 National Budget as a big bold budget that will
create an enabling environment to foster financially strong
and resilient economy which will ultimately benefit all
Fijian consumers.

While commending the Government for
the resilient budget, CCoF Chief Executive Officer Ms Seema
Shandil said that the 2021-2022 National Budget is a
holistic budget which will ensure no one – from
businesses, to consumers and even the most vulnerable
Fijians, are left behind as we strive to triumph over this
pandemic.

“The various fiscal and economic policies
announced by the Minister of Economy has sent a strong
signal that they are committed to economic recovery from
COVID 19 and are ready to keep spending to speed up the
recovery. The 2021-2022 budget initiatives will encourage
socio economic empowerment as a catalyst for a consumption
driven economy.

Additional direct support to consumers
through various policy announcements such as unemployment
support of over $200 million is also praiseworthy as it will
ensure consumers have the ability to access basic goods and
services. This will provide the much-needed relief to
thousands of eligible Fijians whose income has been affected
due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other social protection
and relief incentives announced in the budget such as
extended bill payment period for consumers, decrease in
traffic infringement fines, waiver of fees such as birth
certificate registration and land survey will also ease some
level of burden on consumers. These initiatives will put
money back in the pockets of Fijian consumers.

“We
have also been getting calls from a lot of consumers and
small businesses saying that they are not being able to make
their utility payments. We had also made a submission
regarding this to the government and it gives us joy to see
that the Government will be meeting the full cost of 34.01
cents per unit for 100 kilowatts of power usage for eligible
Fijians,” said Ms Shandil.

Apart from these policies
directly targeting consumers, many other initiatives
announced by the Government will ultimately have a ripple
effect along the entire economic chains – leading to
economic growth and consumer welfare amidst the current
pandemic. 

Last night’s budget announcements
will certainly trigger consumer spending which is needed for
positive growth of the economy as a whole. It is a fact that
more money in consumers’ pockets means more spending and
consequently more business for traders and ultimately
positive economic growth. 

To seek advice on any
consumer issue, Fijians can call the toll-free number 155 or
lodge a complaint using the Consumer Council of Fiji mobile
app.

© Scoop Media

 



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