PM Douglas: “home-grown economic reform programme is working

With the Washington-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) stating that real economic growth in St. Kitts and Nevis was nearly four percent in 2013, the Federation’s Prime Minister the Right Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas said his Labour Party Administration has stuck to the home-grown programme.

“Our reform programme continues on a steady track and we continue to demonstrate fiscal discipline. Indeed, it was stressed by the Fund this morning (Wednesday) that St. Kitts and Nevis continues to function within ‘a stable and sound fiscal framework,’ that our fiscal situation is ‘dramatically improved,’ and that the Federation under this government ‘has an excellent track record’.” said Prime Minister Douglas at his monthly press conference on Wednesday.

Referring to the IMF statement issued by the Head of the Mission, Ms. Judith Gold that the Federation ‘was doing well and poised to continue doing well,’ Prime Minister Douglas told reporters: “What this means, then, is that home-grown economic reform programme is working.”

He recalled that he had stressed in several press briefings that a leading priority of his Government is the protection of the Federation and its people in the face of a harsh global environment.

“I have made clear that fiscal discipline and prudence would constitute the cornerstone of my Government’s economic thrust at the same time that my Government moved forward with the implementation of policies that would result in the injection of both local and foreign capital in the economy of our Federation,” said Dr. Douglas.

He reiterated aspects of the report outlined by the IMF St. Kitts and Nevis Mission, Ms. Judith Gold who outlined to the media the many areas in which the performance of the Federation met and exceeded expectations.

“The Federation, for example, had earlier arranged for IMF funding to be available, in the event that in would be needed in the ongoing management of the economy. We did not use the full amount that was available to us and this, the IMF pointed out, was indicative of the sound economic management demonstrated by our Government, a caliber of management which, in the end, will enable us to return to the IMF funds which we had originally thought that we might need,” said Prime Minister Douglas.

“The IMF has also affirmed its confidence in the economic approach and priorities of the Federation, an approach and priorities which continues to move the Debt to GDP ratio in the right direction and which, if we continue on our present course, is expected to settle at some 60% by the year 2020.

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