Ministries and departments to cut expenses?

Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017. 10:30 a.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: Prime Minister Dean Barrow presented the 2017-2018 budget at the House of Representatives on Monday. As part of its fiscal consolidation measures under the terms of restructured 2034 bonds, GOB’s consolidation plan for this fiscal year must be at least 3 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

To accomplish this, GoB is seeking a $70 million (or 2% 0f GDP) increase in revenues and a $30 million (or 1 % of GDP) reduction in expenditures.

At the budget presentation, PM Barrow discussed some of the cost saving measures to be exercised by all ministries and departments. The cuts will focus on non-essential goods and services, and will particularly affect the fuel, telephone and utility expenses of Ministries.

Barrow emphasized Government’s continued and deliberate avoidance of “regressive and punitive” measures that have been consistently recommended by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), such as mass retrenchment,  increasing the General Sales Tax to 15% or more and converting the current non-contributory pension scheme to a contributory one.

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