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PM presents 2016 Budget Estimates

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Although a current account deficit of $11.9 million is budgeted in the Estimates, Government will seek, in the actual implementation of the 2016 Budget to reduce the extent of this budgeted current account deficit.

As he presented the Budget address yesterday, Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dr Ralph Gonsalves stated his Government’s intention.{{more}}

“Indeed, even in the face of a budgeted current account deficit of $28.5 million in 2015, we implemented the budget in a manner to secure, on the basis of the preliminary fiscal outturn for 2015, a small surplus of $6.2 million. So, our intention in this regard in 2016 is not misplaced, barring unforeseen, adverse events.”

The Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for 2016 total $912.9 million: Of this sum, Recurrent Expenditure accounts for $576.55 million; Amortization amounts to $116.67 million; Sinking Fund Contribution receives an allocation of $22.0 million; and Capital Expenditure is allocated $197.67 million.

A current account deficit of $11.9 million is budgeted in the Estimates, some 58 per cent less than the budgeted deficit for 2015.

The Prime Minister said the central theme for Budget 2016 is: “Economic Growth, Job Creation, Zero Hunger, and Fiscal Consolidation Amidst Global Uncertainties.”

He said each aspect of this thematic formulation is pregnant with meaning for the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines.

“Our government’s emphasis in 2016 is to facilitate further economic growth, create greater employment, including more quality jobs, accelerate a five-year push (2016 to 2020, inclusive) to achieve zero hunger, and to consolidate our fiscal condition, not through austerity, but by way of prudence and enterprise.”

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