...Tewarie: Challenge to keep expenditure in check
Planning Minister Dr Bhoendradatt Tewarie has said the challenge for the 2012/2013 national budget will be to create economic growth while keeping expenditure in check.
Tewarie was delivering the feature address at the St Augustine Rotary Club's meeting at Botticelli's Restaurant at Grand Bazaar, off the Uriah Butler Highway on Wednesday night.
Tewarie asked rhetorically: "Do you move to austerity or do you try to achieve prosperity by a stimulus package? And the Minister of Finance, in our situation, has made the assessment that what we need is a judicious mix of both."
Finance Minister Larry Howai will present the 2012/2013 National Budget on October 1.
Tewarie said Government needed to contain expenditure and some of the wastage but: "You don't want to do that to the extent that you would hurt large numbers of people and put them in a worse position than they are at present."
Once Government is able to manage revenue, expenditure and the budget deficit, the next objective is to create growth in the economy, he added.
"How do you get growth? How do you create jobs? That remains and begins to become the challenge of the Budget and remains a special challenge," he said, adding that countries worldwide were attempting to return their economic growth to pre-2008 rates.
He said the growth rates for economic superpowers like China and India had slowed as had the economic growth rates for successful Latin American countries like Brazil and Chile.