He made this appeal while delivering his official opening statement at a pre-budget consultation of GCCI with private sector and government held at GCCI’s headquarters on Wednesday and Thursday.
According to him, to compensate for this, government should apply a SIN tax on sugar, to help fight the increasing rate of diabetes in the country.
The GCCI boss also reiterated the need for government to raise a fund of D100 million to support small and medium sized enterprises with non-bank financing in conjunction with GCCI and Social Development Fund (SDF).
He added that among the proposals that GCCI made is government support to the community henceforth should be cash based to encourage the trickle –down effect on community traders, as well as to encourage big businesses to pay taxes by establishing the club of 100 both in tax and SSHFC payment.
Mr. Jobe further stated that government should create an economic zone with Senegal for locally produced goods – poultry, eggs, dairy and vegetables etc. by respecting simultaneously the common external tariffs and the ETLS and also to strengthen the Standards Bureau as an important pillar of fair competition and economic development for cost of poor health, safety, security and environment cannot be priced as well as to review the socio-economic benefit of discrimination of importation in small sizes for flour, sugar and cement.
According to him, “for us, the private sector led development is dependent on these consideration in this most important exercise of government -taxation and expenditure. I am confident that we would have meaningful partnership to make Gambia great.”
In his further remarks, Mr. Jobe stated that the purpose of the pre-budget consultation meeting amidst the covid-19 pandemic was to consult on the 2020 budget. “We are cognizant of the existential threat posed by this pandemic to our individual and collective wellbeing both in terms of lives and livelihood.”
He also reiterated that with the advent of covid-19, the GCCI marshaled financial technical and expertise to increase the residence of the health system, and also galvanised support for the government and WHO led effort.
He added that in the preparation of the covid-19 budget this year, “we promulgate the NEW IMF, hoping that using the word IMF, the government would listen. GCCI is not only sincere to this consultation but also to broaden the partnership between government, businesses and community to solve the problems of society.”