Government plans stimulus

| 30/11/2010

(CNS): More than 250 suggestions and initiatives have been submitted to the government’s Stimulus Implementation Group by numerous committees and associations with a view to boosting the local economy. The group, which was recently created to examine the most effective way government can help stimulate the economy, is now in the process of prioritising a list of measures for implementation in the remainder of this fiscal year, the premier has revealed. With an eye on the promised 90-day target, McKeeva Bush told the Legislative Assembly last week that he will be unveiling a stimulus programme next month to chart the way through the recession.

“It is important to demonstrate to our private sector partners, both local and international, that we are prepared to identify problems, prescribe solutions and oversee their implementation,” Bush told his legislative colleagues as he delivered government’s strategic policy statement. “We will provide the leadership that sets this country on the right path, and given the evidence the country has seen to date, we are heading in the right direction.”

Bush promised in a television address delivered in September that the economy would be back on track within 90 days and has said he will be unveiling the stimulus plan to meet that target. In that presentation he vowed that Cayman would be back on the path to success by 16 December and he would deliver another public speech revealing which proposals government intended to implement.

Although the premier has not given away specific details of the planned economic boost, he has previously hinted at a reduction in duty for the construction industry, the contraction of the rollover period and a reduction of fees for small businesses. While he noted that it was “imperative to recognize” that an important component of the cost of living is the cost of doing business, Bush also spoke of looking at ways to reduce those costs via improving efficiency in the bureaucracy that businesses are faced with.

“It is … my government’s intention to conduct a complete review of fees applicable to small businesses with a view to making reductions where appropriate. This will include, for example, work permit fees and trade and business licenses. This review will not focus exclusively on reducing fees, but look at overall efficiencies that can be gained from integrating various systems within government to make it easier for businesses to obtain necessary permissions to conduct legitimate activity,” he added.

The premier indicated that it was the micro-businesses that were of particular concern — those that have five or fewer employees – and he wanted to ensure they were not disadvantaged when trying to compete with larger businesses.

“We know for a fact that micro-businesses play a significant role in providing opportunities for individuals in lower income brackets, but are the types of businesses most vulnerable to failure,” Bush said.

With an eye also on new development and the significant jobs created by construction, he said he was continuing to explore the possibility of temporarily reducing the duties on construction materials as well as a reduction in stamp duty over the next 6 to 12 month period.

“This will provide an extra incentive to get new inward investment projects off the ground and in turn create new opportunities for local businesses. This is a forward-looking strategy that will have implications for this fiscal year and certainly the ones to come,” Bush claimed.

Related article: Mac vows 3 months to success

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  1. Dred says:

    I got your stimulus package right here:

    1) Undo everything you have done to date including but not limited to:

                a) Work Permit hikes

                b) Business Fee hikes

                c) Duty increases including gas

    2) Pay back into the government purse all your unnecessary travel (vacation) from your own pocket.

    3) Call for a byelection and resign

    I believe only after this will we see the economy turn around.

    Your economics skills are attrocious. Increasing fees during a global recession is STUPID XXXX. Local businesses are already suffering because of the downturn in business and how do you stimulate them? By increasing every possible cost you can. Then you have the sheer gaul to say you want to attract business to Cayman. Are you nuts? Who would want to come to a country with XXXXX at the helm who has no economic knowledge at all?


  2. Anonymous says:

    FORGET THE STIMULUS! Get crime under control so that decent citizens can feel safe to work and live in this country that was once was a haven to everyone from crime and decline! If we get crime udner control there will be no need for a "stimulus" since decent people will be more productive amd have the confidence to invest in this formerly beuatiful country.

    Draconian measures are needed; a policeman on every street corner, CCTVs on every pole, and swift and severe justice for these criminals! That’s how we "stimulate" the economy/country.

    • TCM29 says:

      As a US citizen that (used to) visit Cayman twice a year, I agree with you 100%. The daily crime I read about has kept us away in favor of other Caribbean places, that have less violent and fewer incidences.I have found tourism is way off everywhere, as everyone is real selective now.

      I also think it is funny you are planning a "stimulus" program when you pay no taxes in the first place. We are heavily taxed in the US where they reward failure and non- producers.

      I love your country, and want to return someday if possible. My stimulus suggestion would be to launch a massive island litter cleanup, get rid of Mt Trashmore, and eventually able to boast the distinction of having the greenest, cleanest place in the Caribbean.

      Abaco, Bahamas, December 2010.

  3. Al Nomadi says:

    Those that do not want to be involved in politics are doomed to be ruled by their inferiors. Plato

  4. Uncivil Servant says:

    Unless it involves either the reinstatement of the 3.2% of my salary that was stolen from me 6 months ago, or a reduction in fuel duty, or both, then I truly have no interest and will benefit in no way, shape or form.

    • noname says:

      Don’t expect any positive movement in compensation or fuel duty reduction until much closer to election time.

    • Anonymous says:

      We the tax payers will return to you, your 3.2 % of your salary, but you be reasonable and start contribution to your pension, pay up your half of the 12 % (6%) we the tax payers are paying for you.

      Pay up your half of  health Insurance, we the tax payers are sacrificing our hard earned cash, to pay for you.


  5. Anonymous says:

    The only Stimulus package that is actually working at the moment is the one that the Robbers are running… They are stimulating the crime rate!

    • Anonymous says:

      UDP’s stimulus: more money for our supporters, families & friends!

    • BORN FREE says:

      How many stimulus packages will this one make it? Why haven’t we heard of anyone who succeeded from previous McKeeva Bush’s stimulus packages? The dangerous thing about any stimulus package proposed by the UDP government is that they can help anyone they please. They choose who they help, & we all know how that generally works out with the UDP (cronies please line up orderly). But we never hear about who they helped. Are they ashamed for the public to see who & who got the help? It sure is nice (sorry, I should say rewarding not nice) to be closely associated with the UDP.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Expect the "stimulus" to be window dressing that doesn’t go far enough or address the real underlying economic issues.  Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic so that Mac can say at least he did something.

    The local economy is hampered by immigration policy, the local companies control laws and excessive import duty.

    Immigration policy means there are fewer expats and that ones that are here know it will never be their home so they do not invest locally or buy houses.

    The LCCL means that only Caymanians can do business in the local economy. There are therefore fewer employers and there is less innovation and competition to reduce prices and the overall cost of living.

    Excessive import duty means prices are too high and people don’t do their discretionary spending here. This indirectly effects every industry since wages have to reflect the cost of buying basic necessities.


  7. Maynard says:

    "Our rulers are incompetent as they are mad and wicked." John Maynard Keynes 1917. 

  8. Devils Advocate says:

    All the ’employable’ Caymanians like Rolston Anglin should explain to the Premier and fellow UDP consultants, that there are two economic theories used to stimulate (or contract growth) in the market at a macro level.

    They can use monetary policy (money supply, interest rates etc) and or fiscal policy by which you can implement Keynesian theories (those the Premier said were inappropriate for Cayman!!!)….that involves government spending, larger governments.

    If they need an independent consultant to give them objective opinions, give me a call. I am one of those ‘unemployable’ Caymanians according to our Labour Minister. Better yet, since I am the Devil’s Advocate I’ll wait at Hell so as not to inconvenience the UDP WB MLAS (now those are some impressive acronyms to have behind your name!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      impressive acronyms: and remember that he’ll have KY at his behind too!


  9. Christmas Time says:

    Brace for it!

    Lets all hope he gets it right or some of us poor folks might have to start stealing education from the schools next!


    Hint !Hint!

  10. Anonymous says:

    zzzzz…he said all this 18 months ago….what we need now is action not another list of plans, proposals, pie in the sky ideas that will never get done….

  11. Anonymous says:

     I thought Big Mac said Keynesian style deficit spending wasn’t right for Cayman.  So why is he going about his merry way deficit spending?  Or is it that someone wrote his speech and he didn’t understand what he was saying?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Didn’t he just say that he thinks Keynesian economic policies would fail in Cayman? Does the man understand even the slightest bit of economic theory or is doing this blatantly to make my brain explode? (Please don’t misunderstand, I support Keynesian policies, I just am in awe of Mac’s ability to say something and then do the opposite a day later.) The one thing I have to hand to him is that he’s mastered the ability to speak from both sides of his mouth at the same time.