Friday, March 27, 2009

If you were Minister of Finance of Jamaica."JAMAICAN OBSERVER'


Business
If you were Minister of Finance how would you spur growth in Jamaica?
By Al Edwards
Friday, March 27, 2009
It is generally acknowledged that the Jamaican economy is in the doldrums and already the rating agencies have downgraded the country. Jamaica's public debt is now at J$1.2 trillion and its fiscal and trade deficit are at nightmare proportions.
The country's three largest foreign currency earners - tourism, bauxite/alumina and remittances - are down and 13,000 jobs have been lost since October of last year. What is a cause for concern is the likely social unrest and the unacceptable crime levels besieging the country. This week saw 12 people murdered in the space of 17 hours and as the economy continued to contract social unrest seems a distinct possibility.
The country's leading talk show host Wilmot Perkins has said that the media are culpable in the country's predicament as they choose to concentrate on frivolity instead of bringing to the country pertinent news and the severity of the situation.
The Government is severely constrained and has limited options, if any, and has not unequivocally come to the nation with a comprehensive plan to address its plight. It may not have done so for fear of igniting civil disorder and therefore committing political Hari Kari.
Pointing blame at this juncture is futile. What has to be immediately addressed is how will Jamaica get out of this inertia and grow its economy so that its citizens can prosper. It has been said that a country is nothing more than a multiple of businesses, and if businesses prosper, so does the country.(MORE,CLICK HERE:http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/magazines/Business/html/20090326T220000-0500_148242_OBS_IF_YOU_WERE_MINISTER_OF_FINANCE_HOW_WOULD_YOU_SPUR_GROWTH_IN_JAMAICA__.asp

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