IMF says second phase of measures needed for economic recovery

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Friday served notice that a second phase of measures will be needed to help Barbados’ economic recovery.

The warning came in a statement issued at the end of a July 2 to 12 visit to the island by an IMF staff team, led by Bert van Selm, which held discussions with various stakeholders on a pending IMF-supported economic recovery and transformation plan.

The IMF team said fiscal consolidation alongside a comprehensive debt restructuring exercise is critical for restoring debt sustainability and policy credibility.

It added that the budget approved in by Parliament on June 11, in which Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Mia Mottley announced a BDS$1.2 billion austerity package, was “a decisive step in the right direction”.

“The Budget targets a primary surplus of six per cent of GDP. Consistent with the message delivered by the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance during the Budget, a second phase of measures will be needed to achieve this target. This next phase will focus on reducing expenditures—notably by improving the efficiency and effectiveness of public services, reducing government transfers to state-owned enterprises by reviewing user fees, exploring options for mergers, and providing stronger oversight,” it said.

“Progress being made by the authorities in furthering good-faith discussions with domestic and external creditors is welcome. Continuing open dialogue and sharing information, will remain important in concluding an orderly debt restructuring process.”

The IMF said significant progress had been made during this IMF staff visit on the plan that could underpin financial support from the IMF.

“On its return to Washington the team will continue to analyze the Government’s comprehensive reform program. We will remain closely engaged with the authorities in the coming weeks,” the statement said.

Pin It

Community Rules

antiguaobserver.com is really happy to provide this forum in which all are encouraged to freely state their opinions without ridiculing anyone or being ridiculed. We've found that happens really easily if each comment is limited to the topic at hand. We will approve any comment that speaks solely to the story to which it is attached and is free from name calling and defamatory statements.

While we will not post comments questioning moderators' judgement, we will take such suggestions into consideration as possible ways to improve the experience of all community members. If you feel your submission has been disallowed unfairly or if a breech slips through our net, please let us know by e-mailing customer_support@antiguaobserver.com.