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  • Rochelle Williasm

State Minister for Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams, says as at the end of March 2017, the country’s Debt to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio was at 115 per cent.

“Looking forward, the projection is for the Debt/GDP ratio to be at 108.6 per cent at the end of this fiscal year 2017/18 and at 89.5 per cent by the end of fiscal year 2019/20,” she said.

Mrs. Williams was making her contribution to the 2017/18 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on May 9.

She noted that the current figure was achieved through the consolidation of the Central Government debt with the Public Bodies debt at the beginning of the 2017/18 financial year, adding that it excluded the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) debt, in keeping with international standards.

Additionally, she said the figure was consistent with the Public Sector Debt Statistics Guide, developed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“Of significance, this consolidation now allows us to net off any cross-holdings among the various entities,” the State Minister said.

She said that this is just one of a number of targets set by the Ministry as part of the Public Bodies reform, which is moving in the right direction.

Mrs. Williams reiterated the Ministry’s commitment to reducing the Government’s wage bill and lowering pension costs to shift Jamaica’s limited fiscal resources to productive spending.

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