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The Editor Speaks: Well done Mr. Archer!

Colin WilsonwebHon. Marco Archer, Minister for Finance, outlined the first spending plans of government on Wednesday (26) morning when he asked the Legislative Assembly to approve an appropriations bill for $193.4M. This will allow government, he said, to function from 1st July to 31st October 2013.

“There should not [be] cause for alarm,” he said when he told the House that government expected to start with a deficit of around $56M. Government revenues were nearly always less than operating expenditures during the second half of the year. He also said he wanted to keep a $30M overdraft facility that government had already received verbal approval for.

The emergency spending package was approved. It will take effect after the financial year ends on 30th June.

Please see attachments showing the Interim Budget Motion and the Schedule

Archer warned there was still a long way to go before the economy would rebound to a full-employment level.

“During the preparation of the full-year Budget for 2013/14, government agencies should be mindful that it is very likely that their budgets may be decreased below the level of appropriations in the 2012/13 financial year,” he said. “In this current economic environment, government must innovate and deliver services at reduced costs.”

The Finance Minister said students who had been awarded scholarships to study overseas under McKeeva Bush’s “Promotion of Nation Building” appropriation would not lose financial support. Allowances had been made in the spending package for government to continue in areas that they had been committed to by the previous governments.

Archer said there were some items not adequately provided for in the 2012/13 Budget (eg. medical care at overseas institutions for indigents) and would have to be adjusted in the interim budget.

As the government develops its full year budget Archer warned that expected outputs from statutory authorities and government owned companies were based on the normal levels of services they provide, and “this is one area that will be under enhanced scrutiny”.

I was impressed with the professional approach that had been taken by Minister Archer and it was so refreshing after the ones that had been presented by the past administration over the last four years.

There were no money trees included to make us feel all was well. This was the facts and nothing but the facts.

Well done Mr Archer.

Attach 1Attach 2Motion


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