Minister optimistic in face of expanded GDP

| 01/09/2014

(CNS): The local gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by an estimated 1.5 percent in the first quarter 201 the 2014 financial year, according to the latest statistics published by the Economics and Statistics Office. Despite inflation running at around 2.3% due to an increase in the consumer price index, local imports grew 5%. The economic growth occurred against the back-drop of improvements in the government’s fiscal surplus from CI$131.8 million in the first quarter of 2013 to CI$149.4 million this year. This was generated by strong growth in revenue and a decline in total expenditure. The central government’s total outstanding debt also fell to CI$558.3 million as at March 2014 compared to CI$582.6 million a year ago.

As a result of the latest economic figures, Finance and Economic Development Minister Marco Archer said the performance during the first quarter of 2014 pointed to stable economic recovery. “Furthermore, it is broad-based as a number of sectors have contributed to it. Given this performance, I am cautiously optimistic that we will see an overall GDP growth of 1.9 percent in 2014,” he added.

The growth in GDP is a positive indicator but for those either out of work or at the bottom of the socio-economic pile the inflation that comes with it makes life even tougher.

Food and non-alcoholic drinks increased by 2.5% because of higher global food prices. But the average price of household equipment also rose by 6.8% in the first quarter.

Miscellaneous goods and services rose by 7.6% because of higher insurance costs, while restaurants were running at a whopping 11.6% inflation rate because of what ESO officials said was the demand from tourist arrivals.

See more details below in the full report on the first economic quarter of this financial year.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Archer is trying his best to finally have a balanced budget for the Government of the Cayman Islands. We need to know the true expenses, income, assets and liabilities of the Government as these reflect the financial state of the country at a specific period of time. In achieving this goal, the statutory bodies and other Government Department must present current and true financial statements which have been lacking in past years.

    The forgoing seems clear to me that this is a bookkeeper’s job and not necessarily a Minister of Finance job. The island has a serious crime rate at the moment with a lot of unemployed Caymanians. There is an urgent need to immediately address the Cruise Berthing Facility, Airport Expansion, Northward Prison Improvement/Expansion, Unemployment and Housing for Caymanians to name a few. As Minister of Finance, these are some of the areas we Caymanians feel urgent attention is required and proposed ways to improve. As Minister of Finance, provide the country with ideas, financial data and economic forecast on how to achieve the forgoing.

    Mr. Archer, a balanced budget means nothing more than a balanced budget if the people are starving, homeless, unemployed and crime is rampant!  Also, propose financial data and mehodology on how to improve the infrastruture of the country and by extention the overall standard of living for the people of these islands.

    Raise the bar from being a bookeeper to a Minister of Finance Sir!

    • Anonymous says:

      1. Mr. Archer has already raised the bar for being the Minister of Finance.

      2. When are you idiots going to understand that discussion about the country's economic growth is a completely separate matter from balancing the budget?

      3. The issues you have highlighted are not a part of his portfolio.

      Since you do not even understand the issues being discussed you are in no position to comment about how he should do his job.    

  2. Maximus says:

    Let's be real here for a minute.

    "outstanding debt also fell to CI$558.3 million … compared to CI$582.6 million a year ago". 

    Mr Archer, with all due respect, but how do we even know how much money is owed by the CIGWe can't even account for what Government spends on a day to day basis… What merit do these statistics really have if we cant even balance our books? 

    These economic briefings are just smoke and mirrors at the end of the day; something to give the people what looks like progress when in reality theseso called "leaders" are leading us all down a slippery slope. 

    As the people, why do more of us not ask ourselves:

    • How much better would these figures be if we could account for the blatant theft of public funds over the last few years; and then this money was then used to aid the middle and lower class with youth programs; education etc
    • Why do we not have a democratic society? One man one vote
    • Why are the peoples needs NEVER addressed?
    • Why are our so called leaders not being held accountable for their actions?

    Why do we, the people, stand divided? In unison all of these issues could be addressed tomorrow. I say tomorrow, because if we were to unite,  no one need wait for the next election or the next presidential candidate, but tomorrow we could take the power back and go back to the old fashioned 




    • Anonymous says:

      Please stop writing nonsense. When it is bad news you are quite happy to believe the figures. We are balancing our books, you moron.   

    • Anonymous says:

      What a lot of hot air. If the numbers had increased you would have no problem believing them. Give credit where credit is due. Who said that we are not balancing our budget? Try to at least have an understanding of the subject before typing.

  3. Anonymous says:

    At last – a Minister of Finance who actually understands economics.

  4. Anonymous says:

    We need a finnace minister with strategic vision not a glorified book keeper.  This guy is book smart and that's it, no vision or strategy here ppl.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Minister talk to us about your parties Manifesto and what you have not delivered.  In particular OMOV.  This issue is not going away and will hurt you all severely in the next election if youdo not live up to your word.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Archer it is all well and fine to speak about a balanced budget, but the bragging rights for this goes no further than the ceilings of the Legislative Assembly.  How does your balanced budget help the unemployed get work, how does it assist the homeless to find homes, how does it feed the hungry, clothe the naked, how does it provide lights and water to those without.

    There are major issues in this country that are more vital than the bragging rights of a blanced budget, such as the fixing of the dump, airport renovations, the port, hurting families. etc  These are issue true politicians would fix and fix now not 20 years from now.

    It is so obvious that the progressives messed up the finances so bad in 2005-2009 that they want to make sure this does not occur again that is why we are always hearing about this balanced budget.  Well they have the right guy there Mr. Archer is a highly paid book keeper.  He will make sure the numbers are right, but forget about anything else happening.

    BUDGETS don't come before your PEOPLE!!!


  7. Anonyanmous says:

    This is good but how does it translate for the unemployed and the working poor making $2.00 per hour?

  8. Anonymous4 says:

    We need another election we can't wait to 2017. This place will be in a mess with these in charge for another three years. God help us!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Who the #uck are we going to vote for???? Santi Clause?????


    • Anonymous says:

      There is an obvious disconnect between this story, which ispositive, and your comments. One gets the feeling that you would make those same comments whether the story was positive or negative.

    • Anonymous says:

      That's right, can't wait to get Big Mac back in so we can feed at the trough again. Who do these people think they are trying to manage public finances responsibly! 

  9. 4Cayman says:

    13.32 you hit the head on the nail bang on! They all seems to be disconnected from what is really affecting this country. 

  10. Anonymous says:

    shhhh, Mr. Finance Minister, don't tell your colleagues or they'll use it to justify their insatiable appetite for using government issued credit cards.

  11. Anonymous says:

    More rubbish from ppm. Poor guy is showing us that he's all about sound bites and completely full of it

  12. Anonymous says:

    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.  poor people fed up.  ppl hungry got no jobs no lights etc and all this guy talks about is a balanced budget.

    • Dread On Dread says:

      Minister Archer, optimism cannot help those who are losing their house sah nor those who want to work and can't get hired sah, so we can't weather the weather on optimism sah, so just find ways to increase capital iinvestment in the country zand manage it so that we can all enjoy fully the fruits of I and I labor. Scene.

    • Anonymous says:

      The story is not about a balanced budget. It is about economic growth which tends to increase the job supply. 

  13. Anonymous says:

    Reataurants running at 11.6% inflation rate and they are still moaning and groaning about not making any money!!

  14. Anonymous says:

    This guy is so lost he couldnt find his way home if you have him a map