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Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, addresses journalists during a media briefing at the Ministry, on Thursday (December 10). Beside him is Minister of State in the Finance Ministry, Hon. Marsha Smith.
Photo: Donald De La Haye

Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, says a significant number of COVID-19 Economic Recovery Task Force recommendations are being implemented across government ministries.

Among these, he said, is the implementation of laws that are consistent with Jamaica’s international tax obligations, noting that the recent amendment of the Revenue Administration Act is consistent with that.

Additionally, Dr. Clarke said the Task Force recommended that the Government pursue and accelerate the process of the institutional reform, pointing out that this was undertaken via passage of the Bank of Jamaica (Amendment) Act, 2020 and tabling of legislation for the establishment of the Fiscal Commission.

The Minister was speaking during a media briefing at the Finance Ministry, on Thursday (December 10).

The 28-member committee was appointed by Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, to analyse Jamaica’s economic fallout resulting from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and make recommendations for the country’s recovery.

The group, which was chaired by Dr. Clarke, comprised members of the Cabinet as well as representatives and stakeholders from academia, business, trade unions, and civil society.

Dr. Clarke said other recommendations relating to accelerating Jamaica’s transition to a digital society are in train, adding that this is central to the Task Force’s report that was completed and tabled in Parliament in July.

“You would have heard the Prime Minister speak about accelerating the National Identification System [and] you would have seen [where[ the Central Bank is slated to begin its testing of digital currency next year… all of those are recommendations of the Task Force,” he informed.

Dr. Clarke pointed out that the Task Force was not intended to be a permanent body.

“It was set up to take stock of the realities that we were facing, the challenges that existed, the advantages that we had [in light of COVID-19], and make recommendations for how we should proceed. The Task Force did that job and produced a report,” he added.

Dr. Clarke advised that the Report can be viewed on the Finance Ministry’s website – www.mof.gov.jm, and encouraged interested persons to visit and peruse its contents.

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