Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Minnis on debt to GDP

Dr. Minnis, Leader of the Free National Movement (FNM), issued the following statement on the nation’s debt to GDP:

“I can’t remember the last time that we heard the PLP admit that they are at fault for anything that is happening in The Bahamas.  Time and time again, the people of our great country receive bad news about our economy, and yet the PLP will not admit that they have not fixed the problem.  Not only has the PLP not fixed the debt to GDP, they have made it worse.  In fact, much worse, with this week bringing more bad news that our debt to GDP now stands at 87.4 percent.”
 
“Yet to hear Bradley Roberts tell it, the PLP government rescued The Bahamas from the brink of the fiscal cliff. The Organisation for Responsible Governance called him delusional for making his statement and said that they would like to see the rescue plan if he has one.  A description he eagerly earns with his empty rhetoric and broken promises. ”
 
 “Their stunning ineptitude proves the point that you won’t fix a problem when you choose to ignore the problem.  To turn this around we need to cut wasteful government spending – like the lavish government contracts they hand out to friends and donors, you can encourage growth or you raise revenue.  Now this PLP Government has already raised taxes – forcing the people to shoulder the financial hardships of an onerous VAT tax.  When they came to power they insisted imposing VAT was the only way to bring down both the debt and deficits, yet both our debt and our deficits still remain.” 
 
In fact the International Monetary Fund (IMF), accurately reported last month the VAT tax and other PLP revenue ‘reforms’ have failed to eliminate the fiscal deficit, as promised, because the Christie administration had increased spending at the same time.  Low growth rates are crippling our economy which leads to high levels of unemployment and violent crime. The IMF sees the problems; the people can see the problems, so why can’t this Government see the problems.”
 
“We need to take immediate steps to get our country moving again and that starts by eliminating the wasteful and corrupt spending under the PLP.  No more tax dollars will go to enrich the politically connected or to pay for campaign ads as this government is doing.  Our plans will encourage the private sector to grow and diversify – creating good and sustainable jobs.  We will look at ways of reducing the PLP’s onerous VAT tax so that breadbasket items are not so costly for so many families. We will ensure that all money that our government spends is a matter of public record so that all people will be able to see what their hard earned money is being spent on.  Change is coming, and that change starts with the FNM.”
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