Finance minister warns Jamaicans to brace for more challenges

By Admin Wednesday May 21 2014 in Caribbean
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KINGSTON: Public sector reform, a tight budget and the implementation of major projects are some of the challenges that Finance Minister Dr. Peter Phillips says Jamaicans will be forced to deal with in the near future.

 

According to Phillips, with the fourth quarterly International Monetary Fund (IMF) test out of the way, the next phase which the country is about to enter is more difficult than the previous one.

 

“It is easy to not spend in real terms, it is much more painstaking to tackle the details of the subtle changes that have to be made in each area of public administration,” said Phillips. “It does not attract a grand headline, but it is absolutely important.”

 

Jamaica passed its fourth quarterly International Monetary Fund test under the current agreement for an Extended Fund Facility with the multi-lateral lending agency last week.

 

A recommendation will now go to the Executive Board of the IMF for approval for the disbursement of US$96 million to Jamaica.

 

The submission will be made next month.

 

Last week, Alejandro Warner, the IMF’s Western Hemisphere Director, commended the Government of Jamaica for maintaining political support and civility in the implementation of the Extended Fund Facility. He said this was admirable, in light of the complexities of the program and the social challenges that the country faces.

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