Growth Council to Assume New Roles

Story Highlights

  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says the Economic Growth Council (EGC) is assuming new roles, having achieved the objectives it was initially established to pursue.
  • The Prime Minister made the announcement during his 2018/19 Budget Debate presentation in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (March 20) under the theme ‘Prosperity in Action’.
  • Mr. Holness said the EGC’s monitoring role will be similar to the Economic Programme Oversight Committee’s (EPOC), which, he pointed out, was established as an independent oversight stakeholder body to ensure that the Government maintains fiscal responsibility and discipline.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says the Economic Growth Council (EGC) is assuming new roles, having achieved the objectives it was initially established to pursue.

These new engagements, he said, include monitoring the Government’s performance in relation to specific growth-related policies and its members serving as investment ambassadors.

The Prime Minister made the announcement during his 2018/19 Budget Debate presentation in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (March 20) under the theme ‘Prosperity in Action’.

Mr. Holness said the EGC’s monitoring role will be similar to the Economic Programme Oversight Committee’s (EPOC), which, he pointed out, was established as an independent oversight stakeholder body to ensure that the Government maintains fiscal responsibility and discipline.

“The EGC will now take on its monitoring role to see to it that the Government is executing the growth policies that we agreed to in the document that they prepared and sent to us,” he pointed out.

Mr. Holness said the document, which was drafted following the EGC’s wide-ranging stakeholder consultations in the wake of its establishment in 2016, “creates a road map of growth strategies and policies that the Government should pursue”.

“So you will begin to see… that new responsibility… being rolled out, giving regular updates to the country about the Government’s performance,” he informed.

The Prime Minister advised that in relation to their proposed roles as investment ambassadors, members are working in their private capacities to attract investors to Jamaica, adding that more comprehensive details will be provided in due course.

Meanwhile, Mr. Holness is defending the EGC’s establishment and work.

He said the Council was conceived to, among other things, assist in transitioning economic growth from the “periphery of the political economy to the centre”, noting that this objective has been met.

“They have completed that task that they (were) given, in terms of making growth a buzz word and getting the average (person) excited about the prospects and possibilities of growth and talking, now, about (how) the economy must grow instead of talking about poverty and austerity,” Mr. Holness said.

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