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Mar 8, 2016

P.U.P. Leader Says Budget is Worse Than Expected

John Briceño

P.U.P. leader John Briceño has been openly forecasting that the budget would be a dismal one based on a variety of factors, including industries which seem to be falling and failing for one reason or the other. Faced with the same realities and the same figures, PM Barrow says that public finances are sturdy and stable, while Briceño claims that the budget was even worse than he had anticipated.

 

John Briceño, P.U.P. Leader

“I think it’s probably worse; I think that it is quite telling that the Prime Minister went from the best is yet to come to stability in the time of change. Obviously he has forgotten all the political rhetoric coming to the elections. When you look at the numbers, Belize is just starting to see the effects of a massive hangover that is taking us after that spending spree that the government went through coming to the elections of last year. When we look at the overall numbers that we have a record deficit; a deficit of over five percent of GDP and even the Prime Minister had to accept that it was beyond what is the norm or what is accepted internationally and he is using the excuse of wanting to or that he has to do what it is for the interest of the people. We know that that’s not really the case. The case is that they went into a spending spree so that they could win—some would say—buy the elections. So they bought the elections and now we have to pay for it and unfortunately each and every one of us will have to pay for it. And we are starting to look at the numbers as it starts to manifest itself in the budget. And he also had to accept that when it looks to the productive sector, Belize continues to do very badly this year in agriculture; when you look at sugar the prices have gone down considerably. You look at citrus right now and they are in serious concerns.”

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