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Trinidad: Is the recession over? Malls empty as low spending forces retailers to shut up shop

Despite the government’s claims of an economic turnaround, retailers are yet to feel that impact.

“How can we be out of recession when every day customers saying that they can’t buy anything? We have kept our prices affordable and still people just won’t buy,” one store manager at South Park in Tarouba told Business Day. The woman, who sells household items, said sales have been dismal, and are only getting worse – something she links directly to the closure of the former Petrotrin refinery in nearby Pointe-a-Pierre.

An economic recession is defined as six months or at least two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth. By that definition, TT has been in a recession since the first half of 2015, with a brief recovery in the first and second quarters of 2018, only to slip back into negative growth in the third quarter.

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