The British Virgin Islands must get approval from the United Kingdom before it can pass its 2019 budget.
Premier Andrew Fahie said he made that discovery when he became Minister of Finance less than a month ago.
The UK now has a say in the BVI’s budget largely because of the £300 million loan guarantee it (Britain) is offering to fund the BVI’s recovery and development efforts.
“I’m coming to learn that it’s not only up to us with the budget,
UK rejects BVI’s latest MTFP
The MTFP assesses the territory’s fiscal and economic performance, presents its development and financial objectives over the subsequent three years, and sets out the path to be followed in order to meet these objectives
While noting that the NDP had ‘rightly’ began preparing a 2019 budget before being voted out of office, he said the UK rejected their latest proposed MTFP.
“It (the MTFP) went to the United Kingdom before I took office. But, since taking office, we realised that the UK didn’t agree with the MTFP so we have to get it back up there [to them]. So, there is a lot of things that we didn’t know that was agreed upon and we’re learning about them slowly. But, I am not daunted. I will keep the people informed but we will get it passed,” the Premier said on the Honestly Speaking radio show on Tuesday.
He said passing this year’s budget will be a challenge. The budget must be passed by April 30.
That deadline was decided when the territory’s present and ongoing ‘temporary budget’ was debated last December. At the time, former premier Dr D Orlando Smith successfully sought permission from the House of Assembly to dip into the Consolidated Fund and withdraw $138.9 million so government could continue to operate after the start of the 2019 financial year.
The House agreed to use those monies for up to four months (by April 30) or until the 2019 budget is passed — whichever comes first.