Restoring the Balance
SOUND MONEY: Raising minimum wage and working to control inflated prices on essential goods and healthy food is essential to economic recovery. We will strive to create more stable conditions in which the wages of laborers, teachers, police officers, Belize Defense Force (BDF) and all civil servants can better meet cost of living and raise the standard of living for all Belizean families.
Prices for healthy foods and essentials have risen faster than anytime in recorded history, and inflation is now the order of the day. The Belizean dollar is now worth less than half its value. Greed and corruption have contributed to inflation and this scale has contributed to the increase of crime and other illegal activities; this has destroyed investor confidence and it must be restored.
To combat inflation, a disciplined financial management is necessary, with proper strategic plan to increase our money supply. At the same time, immediate reduction in the size of the Government’s borrowing is also vital. This Government’s corrupt importation practices have done nothing to secure our local industries and protect our jobs. It has done nothing to prevent inflation, as is proved by the doubling of prices since they came into power. Their governance through cronyism, corruption and nepotism have caused loss of jobs, land properties and poverty to all our Belizeans, and reflecting a general reduction in consumer choice.
The state takes too much of the nation’s income; its share must be steadily reduced. When it spends and borrows too much, taxes, interest rates, prices and unemployment rise so that in the long run there is less wealth with which to improve our standards of living and our social services.
Better Value for Money
Any future government which sets out honestly to reduce inflation and taxation will have to make substantial economies, and there should be no doubt about our intention to do so. We do not pretend that every saving can be made without challenges or complaint; but if the government does not economise (austerity mode) the sacrifices required of ordinary people will be too much for our families to bear.
Important savings can be made in several ways. We will scrap expensive infrastructure programs such as – all the road buildings, roundabouts and their kickbacks. We shall reduce government intervention within our industry development, our national funds and particularly, that of the Social Security Fund.
Our unions can only flourish in a free society. A strong and responsible workers union, teacher’s union and trade union movement could play a big part in our economic recovery. We cannot go on, year after year, tearing ourselves apart in increasingly bitter and calamitous industrial disputes. In bringing about economic recovery, we should all be on the same page.
Government and public, management and unions, employers and employees, all have a common interest in raising productivity and profits, thus, increasing investment and employment, and improving real standards of living for everyone in a high-productivity, high-wage, and low-tax economy.
Today, we have a complete opposite of what our economy should be: The government works to hold down wages, sacrificing all hard-working Belizeans, in the pursuit to continue only enriching themselves. The stagnant and crippling economic environment that has almost destroyed the jewel; had several causes:
- High rates of taxation
- No support for our farmers
- Neglect and mismanagement of our agricultural sectors
- Corrupt importation licenses with no stakeholder consultation being done.
The above combination of causes has gone on for years with no growth in production. To top this off, the industry suffered from manipulation of politically appointed posts that directly affected the Agricultural Industry. With a BPF Government, Belize will finally have the well-deserved opportunity to really become the breadbasket of the Caribbean.