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Mar 29, 2023

Leader of Government Business: Government Will Address Inflation

Eamon Courtenay

Leader of Government Business, Eamon Courtenay, during his response, pointed to the figures coming out of the Statistical Institute of Belize. Courtenay highlighted the numbers that showed that the economy rebounded well last year, the employment rate which increased significantly, as well as the increase in minimum wage. Courtenay also mentioned that shortly the government will also take new measures, in tandem with the public and private sectors to address the inflation rate in Belize.


Senator Eamon Courtenay, Leader of Government Business

“The facts are clear. The Belizean economy grew by twelve point four percent in 2022 and we pay tribute and say thanks to the hundreds and thousands of good Belizeans both in the public and private sectors across the length and breadth of this beautiful jewel who have worked tirelessly to ensure that we achieve that kind of stellar growth – twelve point four percent, that is a fact. According to the latest poverty assessment, Madam President, Honourable Senators, sixty-eight thousand fewer Belizeans are poor. And while we acknowledge Madam President that there is a lot more to be done, the facts show that the People’s United Party Government, led by Prime Minister John Briceno is in fact waging a war on poverty, as promised in PlanBelize. Sixty-eight fewer Belizeans are poor. That is a fact. Madam President, I don’t think anyone who wishes to be fair can forget that last year we were able to fully restore to some fourteen thousand odd public officers’ who bore the sacrifice brought on by U.D.P mismanagement and the effects of COVID-19 to restore their wages fully to over fourteen thousand public officers. We returned to public officers that which was rightly theirs but which, Madam President, had to be suspended in the public interest. The restoration of wages to fourteen thousand public officers is a fact, Madam President, and the facts are stubborn. When the Briceno administration came to government we had made a pledge to raise the minimum wage to five dollars. Some of you senators will recall Senator Aldo Salazar when he was here repeatedly said when he was driving to Belmopan he sees the sign that said five dollars – “why unu nuh do it?” Well, Madam President, unfortunately he is not here. The Prime Minister has fulfilled that commitment. We have delivered on our pledge to give hard-working Belizeans a fair wage for an hour’s work. Madam President, the government is mindful of the effects of the pandemic, the war in Ukraine and record inflation in the world and we are fully aware that these adverse shocks are having negative effects on the cost of living. New measures, in collaboration with public officers will be introduced to fight price-gouging. New measures will shortly be announced.”

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