Pickstock Representative Counters Opposition’s Claims on Economic Reports

Pickstock Representative Counters Opposition’s Claims on Economic Reports

During his presentation, Pickstock Area representative Anthony Mahler also rebutted the LOO’s claim that the government has been disingenuous with its reports on the country’s economic and financial standings. Mahler stated that it was the opposition that was being dishonest with its scrutiny of the country’s financial standings. 

Anthony Mahler, Minister of Tourism: “Madam Speaker the member from Mesop said throughout his presentation over and over that the economic and financial data that we’ve used over the last three years are bogus, not real, made up. He even alluded that the IFIs who report on Belize are making all these numbers up but I think he’s making things up in his own mind. These are the facts Madam Speaker. The unemployment rate in 2019 under the UDP was almost 11% and it had grown quickly between the first quarter of 2019 and the last quarter. In the first quarter it was about 7%. Also there were almost 39,000 who were underemployed and that number increased between the first and last quarters of the year by more than 13,000 people. The facts are right there just go on the Statistical Institute of Belize and you’ll find all of it. So I don’t know why he came and said 2019 the unemployment rate was 4%.Today under this PUP government the unemployment rate is the lowest it has ever been in decades, 3%. Even the UDP business people are telling me it’s hard to find people to work but we will fix that, we still have a ways to go. Under the UDP between 2019 and the first quarter of 2020 the economy recorded three consecutive quarters of negative growth. We have a couple economists in here, when you got that what do you call that ? A recession Madam Speaker. And that is even before COVID. Under this PUP government our economy has had positive growth every single year Madam Speaker.”

Mahler also took aim at the LOO’s leadership skills, saying that Barrow is being criticized by his own party members. 

Anthony Mahler, Minister of Tourism: “The letter went on to say and I quote “Shyne, bless his soul, is not a leader. There’s a song on the radio about the wishy washy man.” those aren’t my words now, the UDP is writing to the editor of the Amandala – “that is what he reminds me of. He can’t make up his mind about anything. He does not have the leadership skills and is more comfortable abroad with his celebrity friends than he is leading a political organization.” Those are the words and I really believe that that is a good description of the Leader of the Opposition and the state of play in the United Democratic Party.”

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