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Story Highlights

  • Just over $1 billion has been earmarked to continue implementation of the Government’s Fiscal Administration Modernization Programme.
  • The five-year IDB-funded project aims to support the administration’s focus on attaining sustainable fiscal consolidation.
  • This will be done by strengthening the institutional capacity of the implementing agency, the Ministry of Finance and Planning.

Just over $1 billion has been earmarked in the 2014/15 Estimates of Expenditure to continue implementation of the Government’s Fiscal Administration Modernization Programme.

The five-year Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-funded project, which commenced in December 2011, aims to support the administration’s focus on attaining sustainable fiscal consolidation.

This will be done by strengthening the institutional capacity of the implementing agency, the Ministry of Finance and Planning, to effectively improve customs and inland revenue collections; debt management; and government payment operations.

It is envisaged that this will be achieved through reform undertaken at Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ), and modernization at Jamaica Customs; implementation of a Central Treasury Management System (CTMS); strengthening of the debt management system; and modernization of the Public Enterprise Division.

Up to March this year, significant progress was recorded in implementing earmarked activities.

The TAJ has, thus far, procured 120 desktop, 50 laptop, and 15 tablet computers; commenced implementation of the Integrated Tax Administration System (ITAS), installation of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) video surveillance at the Constant Spring and King Street tax offices, and refurbished the Bay West Training Centre in Montego Bay.

The modernization exercise at Jamaica Customs has, to date, entailed: procurement of 120 personal computers, two servers, and a back-up storage solution.

Work under the Central Treasury Management System sees 33 Ministries, Departments and Agencies now using the treasury model for payments.

Earmarked activities have also included acquisition of a statistical licence; and procurement of eight computer tablets, by the Debt Management Branch, among other things.

Additionally, a Coordinator for the Project Coordination Unit has been recruited, as also a Financial, Procurement, and Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist.

Scheduled activities for 2014/15 include: implementation of the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA); and procurement of additional computers.

The Fiscal Administration Modernization programme is slated for completion in December 2016.