President of the Couva Point Liasa Chamber of Commerce, Ramchand Rajbal Maraj, says the time is right to start re-opening small businesses that do not attract a barrage of customers.
Speaking with Guardian Media, the Chamber president points out that businesses such as hairdressers, which can take clients on an appointment basis, and food producers that can offer a take-away service, should be given the green light to operate, once more.
Rajbal Maraj said the economy is quite depressed at this time because of the strict public health regulations Government implemented to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
And the business chamber boss is happy that the Government has decided to extend the opening days for hardware stores in Trinidad and Tobago.
He told Guardian Media that several customers and hardware dealers had been clamouring for increased opening hours, since the decision to reduce the days and hours was creating more congestion at such businesses.
Rajbal Maraj said when some sections of the manufacturing sector had shut down because of the COVID-19 crisis, the supply of clay bricks, cement and concrete blocks run out.
He said this temporary shortage created an opportunity for some unscrupulous hardware dealers to engage in price gouging, digging-out more money from consumers already under strain because of COVID-19.