Chevon Campbell reports

Chair of the Economic Programme Oversight Committee, Keith Duncan, says EPOC supports the phased approach to re-opening the economy.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Mr. Duncan says we now have to balance lives and livelihoods.

He was speaking this afternoon at a digital quarterly media briefing.

With an expected 14 per cent downturn in GDP for the second quarter of the year, Mr. Duncan believes continued strict lockdown measures are untenable.

Mr. Duncan says he supports measures by the government to relax stay-at-home orders and reopen the country’s borders.

With EPOC projecting a return to pre-COVID-19 GDP levels in fiscal year 23/24, he’s also welcoming the government’s launching of a COVID-19 recovery task force to chart the way forward.

The EPOC Co-Chair says this task force must also look at enhancing productivity amid the new adjustments needed under COVID-19.

Mr. Duncan says he recognizes the increased inherent risk in reopening economic activity and opening the borders.

However, he says EPOC has confidence the government has the proper protocols in place to manage this risk.