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Fri 10th Nov 2017

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After 16 years of the ULP regime, SVG economy still dying

The SVG economy is still dying, even with Argyle airport. We were promised better times with Argyle airport, but things have not improved.

The financial and economic problems created by the incompetent ULP regime still persist and our people are still suffering. People need jobs and poor households need to see their financial income increased substantially.

The SVG economy will only become strong when there is a new government that has the financial know-how and ability to create sustainable streams of revenue for the SVG Treasury.

SVG Green Party Leader Ivan O'Neal, who has BSc degree in Finance and Accounts from Oxford Brookes University, England, has been stressing the critical need for the SVG economy to be driven by productive sectors and to be export oriented. The ULP regime’s policy of begging and borrowing will not create a strong economy.

As a nation, we are getting left behind other countries, because the ULP regime lacks the financial ability to move the economy forward. The past 16 years under the ULP regime have been wasted, as they have failed to create productive economic sectors that export goods to other countries.

The rural economy has been virtually wiped out and this loss has created substantial hardship for the poor masses. Social problems such as crime, poverty, the high level of unemployment, children dropping out of school and households unable to pay water and electricity bills are widespread.

This clearly indicates that things are going badly wrong in SVG and we must change the government and the direction of the economy, and have productive exporting sectors as the engine of the SVG economy.

Industries such as the export of baby foods, herbal teas and fruit juices would make farmers prosperous and boost the rural economy. SVG could create jobs and a stable economy if we had strong productive sectors. We need to build factories for agro-processing and light manufacturing and start exporting in bulk.

We have seen the best of Gonsalves and it has been an undisputed economic failure. It seems that every day Gonsalves is guessing when it comes to managing SVG's economy. His backward policies have left our country broke.

SVG needs a government focused on building a revenue base and creating jobs from productive export sectors. A Green government would focus on utilising SVG's indigenous resources for agro-processing, exporting fresh drinking water, creating an Atlantic tuna fishing and fish processing industry for export, renewable energy production and educating our people with our own SVG university.

Due to economic and financial ignorance, the ULP regime’s strategy has been to focus on dead projects. Hundreds of millions of taxpayers' money has been wasted on projects that do not produce any revenue for the country.

Money has been wastefully spent building the Belle Isle jail, several new police stations, useless resource centres, a centre of excellence and more seriously, the $1.5 billion Argyle airport.

None of these projects were a priority for SVG and none of them are creating revenue for the country. These projects are dead projects, because there is no return on the money that has been spent.

SVG must create productive export industries if we are to save the SVG economy from dying, create sustainable streams of revenue and create thousands of new jobs.

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