Monday, July 4, 2011

St. Vincent & the Grenadines PM notes Guyana's bright growth prospect during CARICOM Summit address

PRIME Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines Mr. Ralph Gonsalves has singled out Guyana as a “bright growth prospect” as he addressed the 32nd regular meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), on the effects of the global economic and financial crises. In his address at the formal opening of the meeting on June 30 in St Kitts and Nevis, Prime Minister Gonsalves said everywhere, across the region, the faces of men and women are strained and anxious as fiscal problems, low growth, increased joblessness, poverty in some countries and slow movement in foreign direct investment abound.

He alluded to the US$800M liability which the member countries of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) carry and the 16 percent of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) that was lost in the CLICO and BAICO collapse.
Reference was also made to three of the six members of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Economic Union (Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada and St Kitts and Nevis) that are on International Monetary Fund (IMF) programmes.
Guyana, on the contrary, was ranked as a bright growth prospect by Gonsalves who provided no further details but vindicated President Bharrat Jagdeo’s assertions about the country’s economy.
President Jagdeo on numerous occasions has been affirming that the Guyanese economy has grown significantly from a Caribbean Council of Churches rating in the 1990s as “poorest in the Caribbean” to one which is today robust.
Only recently, the Guyanese economy was hailed in an International Monetary Fund (IMF) country report for demonstrating resilience and recording a fifth consecutive year of robust growth for 2010 even in the face of external and domestic shocks.
The report, titled Guyana: 2010 Article IV Consultation – Staff Report, Supplement, Public Information Notice on the Executive Board Discussion and Statement by the Executive, is based on bilateral discussions between a team of officials from the IMF and their Guyanese counterparts in November 2010 on economic developments and politics.
At a recent guest lecture at the University of the West Indies, St Augustine Campus in Trinidad and Tobago, he affirmed that there is now more evidence to prove that Guyana is the most progressive country in the region.
He believes that such an achievement came from his administration pursuing a path that brought stability to the entire economy, removing the constraint of the country not being able to pay its way at one point in time.
“We were using 94% of revenue to pay back debt that we borrowed a long time ago and that is only external debt. Every year we took 94% of all the revenue we collected and sent it abroad to service that debt and then 20% of revenue went to pay wages and salaries in the public sector so when you add the two, that’s a 114% of revenue to pay debts and wages and salaries in the public sector,” President Jagdeo is on record as saying.
For him however, the greatest achievement was returning hope to the nation.
“We are committed to ensuring that in Guyana we consistently increase the rights of our people and not just notionally or in a declarative way, like so many countries often do, but by creating mechanisms for them to realize those rights,” President Jagdeo said.

1 comment:

  1. Indeed Guyana has move forward in term of growth by having a stable economy even though there is a economic crisis that is facing the world at present.