Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness told fellow nationals in Mississauga, Ontario last Thursday that Jamaica’s debt to GDP ratio will fall below one hundred per cent by the end of the financial year.
“This is not a political achievement. It is a national achievement. But it is forcing us now to pay for our development with our own taxes and by growing our economy”, Holness explained
The Prime Minister was speaking at a Town Hall meeting at the Praise Cathedral Worship Centre .
“We have gone on a diet. We are not borrowing what we don’t have and can’t pay back”, he added.
Holness noted that some of the borrowing can be attributed to bad policies informed by purely bad politics.
“In 2009 we had no choice but to confront the issues that we had and by then our debt to GDP, meaning what we owed the rest of the world relative to what we produce in a year, for every dollar of production we owed one hundred and forty dollars. So our debt to GDP ratio was $140 to $1.
” We had no choice but to go the IMF for assistance. It forced us to adapt and adopt a more practical approach to the management of our affairs.
” If we are going to develop, we will have to pay for our development by growing our economy and being responsible with our finances. We could not continue to say it was somebody else’s fault. We couldn’t blame it on the international world order because many of the problems were as a result of our local homegrown decisions..”
Holness also told nationals that his government is moving to create a digital economy. A part of this initiative is the National Identification System which is designed to secure the unique identity of every Jamaican.