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Trinidad: Gov’t announces $400m salary relief grant for covid19 unemployed

Government has created a special $400 million temporary unemployment grant for people who may be affected by the impact of its covid19 precautions on the economy.

At a media briefing Monday at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s, Finance Minister Colm Imbert called the new Salary Relief Grant the “most important measure” that his team had come up with “because we recognise because of the measures taken and because of the issues associated with this pandemic there will be people unemployed.”

People who have been temporarily unemployed or displaced as a result of the pandemic will be eligible for a grant up to $1,500 a month for three months in the first instance. The grant will be administered through the National Insurance Board, because it already has data on all the people in the PAYE (pas as you earn) tax system.

“We will give them the money for each unemployed individual who is temporarily displaced. We will work out the details and qualification criteria in due course over the next (week) or so,” Imbert said. He estimated the grant would cost $400 million over the next three months “but we thought it was necessary.”

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