The Office of the Premier said residents can expect to get a clearer snapshot of the state of the territory during the territory’s 2019 budget address today, April 2.
Premier and Minister of Finance Andrew Fahie will be delivering that address inside the House of Assembly in Road Town.
Acting Permanent Secretary in the premier’s office, Elvia Smith-Maduro said Premier Fahie’s address will especially focus on the territory’s economic and fiscal performance.
A key part of this year’s address themed ‘Transitioning Towards Sustainable Growth’ will be the Premier’s announcement of the size of this year’s budget.
Residents will be looking to see whether the budget has increased from last year’s considerably shrunken $299.5 million — which was more than $23 million less than 2017. That deficit was caused by the major disasters that rocked the territory in late 2017.
The then National Democratic Party government had to supplement that 2019 budget with a $50 million loan. And at the end of the financial year (2018), the territory collected more than $50 million in excess revenue.
Coupled with this, the Caribbean Development Bank said the BVI recorded an increase in real gross domestic product (more commonly known as GDP) for 2018.
Notwithstanding this strong economic performance, Premier Fahie said on public radio last month that the previous government squandered those profits before they demitted office. This, he said, has left his Virgin Islands Party administration with no choice but to ‘start from scratch’.
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