Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar yesterday announced a 20 per cent discount on rice, flour and oil in celebration of Eid and Emancipation.

Eid is being celebrated on July 29 and Emancipation on August 1.

The discounts apply only to National Flour Mills (NFM) products.

Government had provided a similar concession on oil, rice and flour last Christmas.

Speaking at the post-Cabinet news conference at her St Clair office, the Prime Minister said: "Government, with the support of the National Flour Mills, is pleased to announce that in celebration of festivals Eid-ul-Fitr and Emancipation, citizens will be provided with a 20 per cent discount on the following products during the period Saturday July 26 (tomorrow) to Friday August 1."

Persad-Bissessar said NFM, which would facilitate this initiative on behalf of the Government, would not be compromised in its financial performance. "Government will reimburse the company in respect of all expenses incurred in the process of effecting this initiative," she said.

She said the measure was a "temporary stop-gap measure to allow for ease of living while Government actively pursues measures to ensure our food security".

The Prime Minister also noted that for the first time in 21 years the food price inflation rate had been kept at single digits for the first five consecutive months of the year. "So some progress has been made. However we recognise that much still needs to be done. The Ministry of Food Production's National Action Plan has the following objectives: to reduce the food import bill, to further reduce inflation primarily driven by food prices, to create sustainable long term productive employment, to contribute to the diversification of the economy, to increase the country's food security," she said.

The Prime Minister said her Government aimed to reduce food price inflation and make it easier for people to afford healthier food for their families.

She said there was a Standing Committee on Food Prices, chaired by Minister Vasant Bharath, which seeks to provide practical ways to bring comfort to consumers. The Committee consists of representatives of stakeholder groups and held its first meeting on Tuesday.

The discount will apply to the following products:

\ Ibis Brand all purpose flour

\ Lotus Brand Whole Wheat Bakers and Cake Flour

\ Good and Natural Brand of Whole Wheat flour

\ Lotus Brand, Soyabean oil—all sizes

\ Lotus Brand Rice—all sizes

\ Cuisine All Purpose Flour (two kilogramme pack)

\ Club Select all purpose flour (10 kilogramme pack)


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