Entrepreneurs in Grenada say the 2022 Christmas Season was the worst they have experienced in their lifetime.
Grenadians were jubilant in November 2022. The Dickon Mitchell administration made retroactive payments to some Grenadian retirees. The government quoted a payment of $75M EC dollars to 525 retired public servants. Key government officials and high-level NDC party members predicted an economic boom for the 2022 Christmas.
A critical assessment of the economic activity around the 2022 Christmas season showed that the pension money did not boost the economy. “When Saturday (Christmas Eve) and ah see town shut down around minutes to 12 ah bawl! Nobody, nothing”, cried an angry street vendor in St George’s.
She was visibly upset and surprised that the pension money did not stimulate the economy as promised by the current government. Another entrepreneur in St Andrew shared the same sentiments. He said, “Lucky thing I grew up rough. So hard times doh bother me. Things were slow but ah grinning through.”
“I was really looking forward to some of that pension money. I borrow some money and stock up for the season. But, like ah burst because things were real slow. Real slow, ah tell you. I don’t know how I am making it through January na. The hardest month,” said an established Businessman in St George.
After hearing pensions were paid, he went into significant debt on the promise of a bumper Christmas season. Some strong NDC party loyalists who agreed that this Christmas was slow called on Grenadians to be patient.
“The money go flow; have faith.” They cried out under the blazing sun with their tables filled with various items for sale. A hopeful cry indeed. The scientific data predicts challenging times economically for Grenada in 2023.
Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell confirmed this in his New Year Message. “The negative fallout from the war in Ukraine, on the heels of a devastating global pandemic, continues to adversely affect global supply chains, increasing the cost of food and fuel, and worsening an already high cost of living,”, said Prime Minister Mitchell as he pleaded to the Grenada population to brace itself for some hard times in 2023.
Reports from Grenada suggest that many are asking questions about the lack of economic activity despite the $75 Million injection into the economy via the pension payments.
Grenadians are going into the New Year worried and holding on tightly to their few coins.