Saint Lucia: The Prime Minister and Ministry of Finance Philip J Pierre has taken decisive action to ensure the costs of everyday items like retail petrol, cooking gas, and price-controlled goods don’t escalate to the levels seen throughout the Eastern Caribbean.
PM Pierre outlined, “My administration has taken decisive actions to ensure that the costs of everyday items like retail cooking gas, petrol, and price-controlled goods do not escalate to the levels seen throughout the region.”
To date, the government has spent $9 million to subsidize cooking gas, which has prevented exorbitant price increases. More than $22 million in potential revenue collection on petroleum imports has been sacrificed to keep retail fuel prices low. Local petroleum importers collect more than $1 million every 3-4 weeks from the government to ensure Saint Lucian consumers pay the lowest retail prices.
Price-controlled goods are 6 percent cheaper and more affordable due to the government’s decision to suspend the service charge. Importation costs of flour, rice and sugar have significantly increased on the international market. To keep prices down for local consumers, the government has absorbed the increased costs to the tune of $9.8 million.
Pensioners have each received a $500 direct deposit from the government to supplement and strengthen their spending power in the face of increasing consumer prices.