Briceño Administration Plans Budget for New Fiscal Year
These coming weeks are crucial for the Briceño Administration to outline a budget for the new fiscal year. Prime Minister, John Briceño, says that at the beginning of this year, GOB had to tighten the budget in the face of unfavourable circumstances, but as the economy began to rebound, revenues were yielding and allowed his government to undergo certain projects. He says at this point they are evaluating what are the areas of priority for this year in order to allocate adequate funds.
Hon. John Briceño, Prime Minister of Belize: “We are not a matter of copying and pasting we have to work with what we have. The beginning of this financial year we made certain assumptions and so we had to tighten the budget but as the time went by the revenues were increasing considerably so we had extra money to do some of the things that we had to do like with the hurricane etc. So that’s what we did this year but in the coming year I’ve been telling ministers that we have to be very strategic in our decision making and to ensure that we look at what are the priorities in this new coming year. That is why in the retreat with Cabinet and parliamentarians we looked at what we’re doing, we looked at Plan Belize, we looked at what we promised and then we tried to come up with some priorities for this year and we hope that that an be reflected in the budget. We have been working, the Ministry of Finance, the Financial Secretary, Minister Coye and myself we’ve been working constantly with the different ministries I know some of them have not been responding as quickly as we expected them to but I sent out a notice on Friday urging all ministers to speak with their CEOs and their technical people to ensure that they can send the necessary information that we have. When I was in opposition I was not criticising the increasing expenditure I was criticising that there was no real economic plan and that the government was just spending money for spending. Now we have a plan, we presented it today to you our medium term strategy plan and it’s based on Plan Belize and it is from those strategic objectives now we’re looking at how we can take out from there and put it so that it can be reflected in the budget as the work that we want to accomplish this year.”