Bahamas, May 31st 2017: DPM and Finance Minister Peter Turnquest in his maiden Budget Communication said the economy is bleaker than expected; $400M worse than stated.
In making the FNM Government’s first Budget presentation since taking oath two weeks ago, Minister Turnquest says while he cannot justify the actions of his predecessors, coming into office has presented the situation bleaker than they first imagined, and says the former administration left a bare cupboard.
The Finance Minister says the Perry Christie Administration misled the people of Bahamas by initially stating debt at $100M, however Minister Turnquest says in actuality it stands at a staggering $500M.
The debt is attributed to expenditure incurred post Hurricane Matthew, and to policies implemented in days just before the lead up to the May 10th polls.
The situation, Minister Turnquest says, has caused the FNM government to defer its manifesto plans for tax relief measures until a decrease in the country’s fiscal burden.
Minister Turnquest says however, some reduction in taxes will be implemented.
The Opposition PLP will no doubt challenge this report when it gets a chance to speak during Budget Debate. Members of the party are already on record accusing the Minnis-led administration of misleading the public.