Dec 09, 2023 News
Kaieteur News – The Government of Guyana (GOG) on Friday announced a 6.5 percent across-the-board salary increase for public servants. This increase, effective retroactively from January 1, 2023, will benefit 54,000 individuals, encompassing public servants, teachers, and members of the Disciplined Services, constitutional office holders, and government pensioners.
The announcement made by Senior Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance, Dr Ashni Singh, entails a $7.5 billion investment into the salaries of public servants.
The 6.5 percent increment translates to less than $5000 addition to the monthly earnings of those public servants currently receiving the minimum wage. Furthermore, 12,000 members of the Disciplined Services are set to receive a one-month tax-free bonus, with civilians of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) being included for the first time. This initiative represents a $1.5 billion investment specifically for the disciplined services.
This adjustment comes at a time when Guyana has been placed among the world’s fastest-growing economies and is expected to expand by at least 25% per year in the next three to four years. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its December 2023 report on Guyana outlined that the country’s economy has tripled in size since the start of oil extraction (end-2019), from one of the lowest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita in Latin America and the Caribbean.
During a live broadcast, Dr. Singh reminded the nation of the 7 percent and 8 percent increments in 2021 and 2022, respectively. He reiterated that the government remains committed to ensuring that all categories of workers enjoy a continuously improved standard of living, better opportunities, and brighter prospects for the future.
Dr. Singh assured the nation that efforts are underway to ensure the timely distribution of salaries, including retroactive amounts and the one-off tax-free bonus, no later than the designated payday in December. He underscored the government’s unwavering focus on advancing its development agenda amid global challenges, with a commitment to providing better opportunities and prosperity for all citizens.
“And even as we face these unprecedented challenges of our time, we remain firmly focused on the task of advancing and accelerating our development agenda aimed at realising in the shortest possible time, improved wellbeing and prosperity for all Guyanese,” he further expressed.
Notably, last month, President Irfaan Ali announced additional benefits, including salary adjustments for graduate teachers, increased Remote Areas Incentive (RAI) for hinterland teachers, and duty-free concessions for specific categories of teachers. Moreover, a $25,000 one-off bonus is slated for public servants, teachers, members of the disciplined services, and employees of semi-autonomous agencies and public enterprises, payable in December 2023.
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