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Friday, March 11, 2011

Time to tighten our belts, Dominican Republic central banker warns

Central banker Héctor Valdez Albizu on Thursday said he’s convinced the government will abide by the proposed austerity measures, while the business sector and the Consumer Rights Foundation (Fundecom) say fuel consumption in transport must be lower and the Hydrocarbon Law must be amended to make its taxes more flexible.

Valdez said however that the private sector must save as well as the government.

Employers, the Industries Association, retailers and agribusiness leaders announced the start of a savings plan including less air conditioning, change of schedules, meals on the job, and errands only when necessity and joint purchases among the companies to reduce production costs.

Valdez said the higher oil prices will impact all economic activities; transport, raw materials and others and acknowledged that flour, wheat, corn and other raw material prices have jumped. “I’m sure, convinced that in this occasion we’re going to do the correct thing, but remember that in 2008 and 2009 we also faced the most terrible financial crisis in the world in the last 80 years and were successful. We could sail through very stormy waters and palliate that crisis successfully."

He said he’s confident the measures president Leonel Fernandez will announce will be accepted, and suggested that all the sectors rationalize cost and " tighten their belt," as other countries have done.

Source: Dominican Today

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