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Government consults with private sector on 2021-22 Budget

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Posted: Wednesday, February 3, 2021. 4:55 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Barely a month from now, Prime Minister John Briceño must present a budget for the fiscal year April 2021-March 2022, with much uncertainty as to whether key industries and services will provide the revenue his Government needs and the specter of retrenchment and salary cuts looming.

On Tuesday, he met with representatives of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Belize Business Bureau.

Joined by his Minister of State Senator Christopher Coye and his CEO Narda Garcia; Tourism Minister Anthony Mahler and Financial Secretary Joseph Waight, the sides discussed the realistic financial situation facing the nation, with a view to rebuilding the economy. The government describes the session as “constructive with valuable input received from the private sector stakeholders.”

Next on the list are the trade unions and social partners as the Government calls all-hands-on-deck to maneuver the difficult financial situation caused by the chronic mismanagement of the economy in past years and further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Budget is likely due to be presented by the second week in March in order to be adopted by April 1.

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