Halkitis confident government will meet revenue growth targets – Eye Witness News

Administrator Davis will continue the borrowing plan implemented by Administrator Minnis

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Economic Affairs Minister Michael Halkitis yesterday said the government was confident it would meet its revenue growth targets, noting that the government’s six-month revenue performance exceeded forecasts by $162 million. dollars to support a positive outlook.

Credit rating agency Moody’s described the government’s revenue growth expectations outlined in the medium-term fiscal strategy and debt management strategy report as “overly optimistic”, noting that unexpected shocks on the country’s economy and difficulties in implementing measures to improve revenue collection could prove to constrain the government’s fiscal consolidation.

Michael Halkitis, Minister of Economic Affairs

Halkitis, during a weekly press briefing at the Prime Minister’s Office, responded to the ratings agency’s statements by saying, “I would like to underscore the fact that we are exceeding our targets.

“There are certain things that we do to make sure that we meet our targets. Their point of view is that it [is] optimistic.

“Our view is yes, it’s optimistic, but we see all reports indicate that the economy is rebounding in terms of tourism, the economy is open, employment levels are increasing and we are redoubling our efforts to better collect revenues.

“We think we’ll get there.”

Halkitis noted that for the first six months of the fiscal year, preliminary estimates indicate revenue exceeded projections by about $162 million.

“Our economy’s rebound is largely supported by improving arrivals and hotel occupancy rates,” Halkitis noted.

“Revenue collected totaled $1.137 billion, an increase of $465 million over the same period a year earlier.

“Overall spending decreased by $1.2 million as the government continued to contain spending, and the medium-term deficit is estimated at $269 million, a decrease of $467 million from the deficit $736 million over the same period last year.”

Most likely, we will borrow less money, and we believe this will start a trend that as the economy improves, our need to borrow becomes less and less.

– Michael Halkitis, Minister of Economic Affairs

Halkitis also noted that the Davis administration will continue the borrowing plan implemented by the Minnis administration through the end of the fiscal year.

“In the last budget there was a borrowing plan that was agreed upon, and that will continue until the end of the year,” Halkitis said.

“If we continue to realize the positives in the area of ​​revenue, it will decrease.

“When we get to the annual budget, we will most likely come up with another borrowing plan.

“Most likely we will borrow less money and we believe this will start a trend that as the economy improves, our need to borrow becomes less and less important.

“We will continue with the borrowing plan to fund this year’s budget.”

As part of the 2021/22 fiscal year, a borrowing resolution of an estimated $1.9 billion has been approved to cover the gap between the government’s projected revenue targets and its total expenditure and revenue. debt refinancing needs.