The Director General of Finance and Planning, Edmond Jackson, said he is deeply concerned and worried for SVG’s economy.
Jackson who was part of a panel discussion on Tuesday, June 22nd, for Public Service Week, painted a grim outlook for the country’s economy which he said cannot afford to contract further.
He said the authorities have been made aware of the potential economic impacts in the long term, if SVG falls behind in its vaccination rate, which would be disastrous for all Vincentians.
The Director further stated that the government has done all it can to keep afloat with paying salaries, noting that it has gotten harder with SVG thrown into deeper public debt. He said in this Covid-19 environment, vaccines now determine economies recovery, and here in SVG, the economic recovery is worrying with a low vaccination rate.
Since the national vaccination campaign started on February 14th 2021, just over 24-thousands doses of vaccines have been administered with a small percentage of fully vaccinated persons. Jackson pointed out that in the OECS, SVG has the lowest vaccination rate.
The Director General defended the government’s position where it may appear as though they are forcing people to take the Covid-19 vaccines. He said while the messages may be clear or mixed, they are speaking from a level of concern and frustration.
On June 7th, 2021, the US Centre for Disease Control placed SVG at high risk for Covid- 19 or level 3 on its travel advisory.