Articles

Fri 4th Jul 2014

Urgent call for PM Gonsalves to resign as SVG Minister of Finance

In December 2013, Minister of Finance, Gonsalves, put forward the SVG Budget Estimates 2014 with revenue (income) for 2014 of $911,571,046. At the time, SVG Green Party said that these estimates were ridiculous and highly inaccurate.

If Gonsalves estimate of $911.6 million was accurate, then at the end of the first quarter of the year, we would expect revenue to be around $227.9 million (see table). However, according to government figures, the actual revenue for the first quarter was an abysmal $122.2 million.

This is $105.7 million less than what the Minister of Finance estimated. The difference is enormous and shows that Gonsalves should resign as the SVG Minister of Finance.

Budget estimates 2014

$911.5m

First quarter estimate 2014
(Budget estimate 2014 divided by 4)

$227.9m

First quarter 2014 actual revenue

$122.2m

Projected actual revenue for 2014
(first quarter actual revenue times by 4)

$488.8m

Difference between projected actual year revenue 2014 and budget estimates 2014

$422.7m

   

First quarter 2014 actual revenue without flood money

$38.2m

Projected actual revenue for 2014 without flood money (First quarter 2014 actual revenue without flood money times 4)

$152.8m

Difference between projected actual year revenue 2014 without flood money and budget estimates 2014

$758.7m

(Source: Summary of Fiscal Operation of SVG economy 1 Jan 2014 to 31 March 2014
researched by Ivan O'Neal BSc(Hons), MSc, MBA)

What is even more worrying, is that of the $122.2 million revenue received in the first quarter of 2014, it is believed $84 million of it was revenue received because of the floods in December 2013. If the floods had not happened, the actual revenue for the first quarter would only have been $38.2 million. The difference is enormous and shows that Gonsalves should resign as the SVG Minister of Finance.

The analysis shows that, it is the money given for the floods in December 2013 that is keeping the SVG economy alive. If SVG had not suffered from heavy floods, the highly incompetent ULP regime would have been forced to call in the IMF to avert the economy from almost certain collapse.

Revenue under the ULP regime is dangerously low and government jobs in SVG are under serious threat.

Going go back to the table, if we multiply the actual revenue for the first quarter 2014 by 4, then we get a projected actual revenue for 2014 to be $488.8 million. This is $422.7 million less than what the Minister of Finance estimated and only about half of what Minister of Finance estimated. The difference is enormous and shows that Gonsalves should resign as the SVG Minister of Finance.

If we multiply the actual revenue for the first quarter 2014 without flood money by 4, then we get a projected actual revenue for 2014 to be $38.2 million x 4 = $152.8 million. This is $758.7 million less than what the Minister of Finance estimated and only 16.8% of his budget estimate for 2014.

Our economy is in serious trouble: our people are being starved of employment and no money is circulating around the country. The Minister of Finance, Gonsalves, has been hopeless. This is confirmed by the fact that he has failed the government audit of Public Accounts for 2008, 2009 and 2010 and mismanaged our economy with fiscal deficits for ten consecutive years, 2005 to 2014.

In St. Lucia, the Civil Service Association President, Mary Issac, has indicated that workers have lost confidence in PM Dr. Kenny Anthony. The opposition party went further and called for PM Dr. Kenny Anthony to resign as the Minister of Finance, as 'he has done the country more harm than good'.

SVG Green Party calls on workers unions in SVG to join the call for Gonsalves to resign as Minister of Finance in order to safeguard government jobs. Our country urgently needs change to stimulate economic growth.

A Green government will bring competent financial management. We will boost the economy by creating new revenue sources from fish, education, technology and Green industries. This will make government jobs safe, create thousands more new jobs and get money circulating around our country.

SVG Green Party

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