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Jun 1, 2020

John Saldivar Proposes Economic Recovery for Belize

John Saldivar

Former Minister of National Security John Saldivar, a trained economist and aspirant for leadership of the United Democratic Party, has put forward a proposal for Belize’s economic recovery post COVID-19.  The Belmopan area representative, who was forced to step down as the newly elected U.D.P. leader in February amid the Lev Dermen scandal, proposes five pillars for the country’s economic resuscitation, including a strict focus on agriculture and infrastructure development.  He also suggests a housing policy which will afford job creation for the many who are presently unemployed.  This morning, Saldivar pitched his plan to the media and we were able to ask several questions, including his own recovery from the Lev Dermen fiasco.


John Saldivar, Area Representative, Belmopan

“We need to focus on agriculture as a main pillar of the new economy  that we are going to chart.  We’ve talked about agriculture a lot in the past and I don’t know that enough has been done to make it the pillar.  We’ve been very comfortable with what tourism has done for our country and it has been a great run over the last two decades or so, but I think COVID-19 has brought into the spotlight the fact that we need to find other ways of sustaining our economy other than tourism which as we now see is vulnerable to certain shocks.  I also focused a little bit on infrastructure.  You know that even before COVID-19, the government has put out a plan; I imagine about two hundred and odd million dollars that it had already programmed to spend on road infrastructure.  So I touched on that, the money is already there so that can be a major part of creating the jobs that are needed to get the economy to rebound.  I also spoke about a housing boom which kind of dovetails into a housing policy that I had put out some time ago.  Basically, housing, shelter is a human right and I thought that we should focus on a housing boom as a means of getting more jobs created in this economy.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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