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Suruj responds to Rohan’s “Rising Costs to Build and Repair Roads”

 

The admission by the Minister of Works that it going to cost more to fix, repair and build new roads was to be expected given the closure of Petrotrin and its hampering the ability of Lake Asphalt to produce bitumen.

With contractors reporting a 42 percent increase in the cost of bitumen and the existence of a 30 percent tariff the cost of roads will rise. (Express Dec 2nd 2018)

This is one of the results of the closure of the Petrotrin refinery. This also means that private housing developers are going to have to pay more for infrastructural works which will Add to the cost of houses if these costs are not absorbed by the developers. It also means that less work is likely to be done by the Ministry and Local Government Corporations.

With red sand needed for plastering virtually unavailable or at extremely high prices, and with a recalcitrant Minister of Agriculture not moving expeditiously to deal with the licenses for red sand mining the customers for houses are going to feel the pinch.

The PNM Government does not seem to appreciate the need to boost the construction sector not by large mega projects utilizing heavy equipment but boosting housing construction which will

Absorb skilled and unskilled labor.

The need for an enlightened government is imminent. The PNM was never ready to govern for prosperity. Their decisions are bringing hardship and the potential for more job losses. One clear example of jobs in danger will be at Lake Asphalt.

Surujrattan Rambachan

Shadow Minister of Works UNC

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