Minister of Finance, Dr. The Honourable Nigel Clarke, while addressing the Jamaica Stock Exchange's 14th Regional Investments & Capital Markets Conference on 'Life after the IMF: Preserving the Benefits from the IMF, Through Sustainable Growth & Development' at Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on Wednesday, January 23, 2019, charged the Jamaican people to continue to be the guarantors of Jamaica's economic fidelity by holding future governments and oppositions accountable for maintaining prudent fiscal policy and policy proposals.
Dr. Clarke emphasised to the audience comprising of business leaders, professionals, public sector leaders and investors that even though Jamaica has been in and out of IMF programmes since our independence, the major difference this time is that we have had a domestication of the ownership of the programme. Members of the society, at all levels have contributed to the overall success of the programme to date. He noted that "What started as an IMF programme six (6) years ago has become Jamaica's programme. It is that domestic ownership – ownership by you that has made that difference."
The Minister also highlighted that for the first time in decades all economic variables are positively aligned: low, stable and predictable inflation; increased employment with more Jamaicans being employed than ever before; fifteen (15) consecutive quarters of positive growth; and historically high Central Bank reserves. The Government is committed to institutionalising the gains of the reforms through the establishment of an Independent Fiscal Council to be the arbiter of Jamaica's Fiscal Rules, modernising the Central Bank and making inflation targeting the primary objective of monetary policy and developing the technical capacity of those in charge of crafting policy at the Ministry of Finance, Bank of Jamaica and the Planning Institute of Jamaica.
Minister Clarke closed by charging the audience to continue to call and push for fiscal prudence and accountability "...you are the best guarantors of our own future and I call upon all those who are of good intention and who want the best for our country to ensure that the coalition that exists, for good order with respect to our fiscal affairs extends long into the future."
Jamaica's Programme relationship with the IMF comes to an end in the last quarter of this calendar year.
For further information contact:
Communication & Public Relations Branch
Ministry of Finance and the Public Service
30 National Heroes Circle
Tel: (876) 932-4656/4660/4655
Contact: Elaine Oxamendi Vicet