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‘PM’s Budget was not the worst!’

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EDITOR: I listened to Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace’s response to Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves’ Budget presentation 2006; He said it is the worst budget he ever heard, yet he responded to it by saying that government should do more for tourism, banana and the private sector. I find it strange that it is the worst budget and he thinks government should pay serious attention to these sectors. {{more}}Mr. Leacock gave the PM’s budget a clean bill of health and Terrance Ollivierre presented himself well by talking about youth and their lives in the Grenadines, especially the tourism sector.

Dr. Gonsalves presented a tax free budget, only gas prices went up. He said in his budget that he’s going to put measures in place to collect money better. Is Dr. Gonsalves saying persons are not doing their jobs? I’m suggesting that besides collecting more money, there will be a shake up in the Customs and Inland Revenue Departments.

How does the PM plan to sustain the economy of this country? The recurrent expenditure surplus, capital projects and the national debt are my concerns! The level of debate in parliament seems to be getting worse; Senator Forde seemed to be reading and Senator Williams must learn to separate Parliament from the courts. Senator Marks must also do more research. Montgomery Daniel is showing some signs of improvement. Minister Miguel sounded like a preacher but Minister of Tourism Glen Beache made an excellent contribution on where his ministry is going and its achievements. This budget by Dr. Gonsalves was a cautious one. I am looking forward to budget 2007 which could be filled with serious taxation.

Sir Dwight Venner, Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank is saying 2006 will be a challenging year with the coming of the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME) and Value Added Tax (VAT). I agree with Sir Dwight, and I am expecting persons with the expertise to inform us about what is going to hit in the future. Let me thank Junior “Soca” Jones for his response – “I still stand by what I say, thank you!”

Kingsley DeFreitas

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