Team Unity’s strong fiscal management continues to lead to surpluses
From the press unit in the Office of the Prime Minister
BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – Further evidence of the Team Unity-led government of St. Kitts and Nevis’ strong and prudent approach to the management of the country’s financial resources was laid out July 13 when Prime Minister and Minister of Finance the Honourable Dr. Timothy Harris announced that the fiscal accounts so far for the year reflected a surplus on the recurrent account, the overall account and the primary account, which are generally used to evaluate the fiscal health of a country.
Prime Minister Harris revealed that this prudent management of the country’s fiscal affairs has resulted in surpluses recorded on the recurrent account of $51.6 million, the overall account of $30.9 million and a primary balance of $42.9 million as at the end of May 31.
The finance minister noted that these results so far show that the country’s actual fiscal out-turns are at a much better position when compared to the figures of 2017, with surplus on the recurrent account this year exceeding that of 2017 by 80 percent, 192 percent with respect to the surplus on the overall account, while the primary balance is up by 90 percent when compared to that of 2017.
“Mr. Speaker, a surplus position is an excellent outcome and it will always be far superior to a deficit,” Prime Minister Harris said during his contribution to the National Assembly, noting that “surpluses provide the fiscal space for the people’s government to respond responsibly to the felt needs of the people.
“When we manage as well as we are doing we are able to provide the wherewithal that allows the government to respond timely with respect to the vicissitudes of life, for example, hurricanes and natural disasters, the increasing and unpredictable outcomes in the price of energy, and international trading situation. It provides the stock of resources from which we can launch, as we have done last month, the government employees’ property ownership programme, where we found $45 million to put into the Development Bank to ensure that every employee of the government could have at this time an opportunity to own a property.”
Harris said this trend illustrates that the economy of St. Kitts and Nevis is doing well and is moving in the right direction.
“Clearly at the rate we are going, we can say that the dark days of mismanagement of our country and the curative involvement of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) will never be under a Team Unity administration, and I give the country that under my leadership we will never go a begging to the IMF again,” he said.
Furthermore, it is this type of prudent fiscal management and surpluses that made it possible for the Team Unity government to pay an extra month’s salary to all civil servants, pensioners, government auxiliary employees (GAEs), Skills Training and Empowerment Programme (STEP) employees and workers at all statutory corporations.