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Mar 23, 2016

Fonseca Reiterates that Belize is in Recession

Francis Fonseca

According to Fonseca, while our debt continues to grow, the economy is stagnant, and that is a recipe for disaster. He toed the Opposition line and assertion that whether it is a matter of public knowledge or not, the country is in recession.

 

Francis Fonseca, Area Representative, Freetown

“Debt is manageable in the context of a growing economy, where there is growth to provide for servicing of that debt. But where you are dealing with a stagnant economy, as we are here in Belize—as the Leader of the Opposition very rightly pointed out—and as you know, in terms of a recession what you are talking technically is two-quarters of negative growth. He is absolutely right and that is what we have been dealing with here in Belize. So we are in fact in an economic recession here in this country and the government should say so to the Belizean people if they are asking them to tighten their belts. Mister Speaker, what is particularly troubling as I was saying was that we have growing debt but we have a stagnant economy. No new sources of revenue; you can search the budget book from top to bottom, except of course the tax, the fuel. No increase in the tax base meaning that you are not growing the tax base and collecting tax from more people. No new meaningful investments, no new growth in the economy to drive revenues upward. And this really shouldn’t come as a surprise to the Belizean people Mister Speaker because what we are reaping in this budget 2016/2017 has been sewn over the past eight years. You can’t grow an economy, you can’t develop an economy, you can’t develop a nation when you are not creating long-term jobs. You can’t do it creating temporary three month jobs; that can’t develop and build an economy. And that’s what we’ve been doing for the last few years.”

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