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Written By : KELERA SERELINI . A special taskforce that was established to monitor the impact of fuel and food prices has handed its report to interim Minister for Finance Mahendra Chaudhry for consideration.
Mr Chaudhry yesterday said after viewing the report, a final copy would be sent to the Fiji Islands Revenue and Customs Authority.
“This copy will be given to FIRCA for further deliberations on the committees findings before an announcement can be made,” he said.
Meanwhile, committee chairman Peceli Vocea said the report would be publicised once the report was viewed by Mr Chaudhry.
The taskforce was established in May and was chaired by Mr Vocea.
It was expected to monitor the escalating prices of food and fuel and its impact on individuals.
It was also to look into ways and means of countering the impact on the economy of further hikes in fuel and food prices. Other members of the taskforce comprises of FIRCA officials, Reserve Bank, Department of Energy, the Ministry of Works and Transport and representatives from the Prime Minister’s Office.
Mr Chaudhry said current market trends of oil prices are likely to rise further in the future. “This is a major worry for government,” he said.
“We need to now formulate a strategy to deal with this calamity as it will affect our foreign reserves, it will affect the cost of production here, transport costs and virtually every other economic activity.
“We must note the warning from world economists that the days of cheap food are over,” he said.
The Interim government had announced urgent measures to cushion the escalating cost of fuel and food items, a global phenomenon that is affecting economies the world over.