Guyana: 4.6 percent growth targeted in G$300.7B Budget for 2019

Guyana: 2019 Budget Unveiled  

Guyana’s real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to grow by 4.6 percent, an indication the economy is on the rise, the Finance Minister said.

A 99-page, five-hour budget speech may have elicited a few yawns in the chambers of the National Assembly, but would have sent quite a few smiles for businesses across the country, after Finance Minister Winston Jordan unveiled a number of tax concessions for businesses.

The growth projection is based on the steady growth in the global economy and stable commodity prices. This growth is expected to be reflected in the major sectors.          

The income tax threshold is expected to rise to $65,000 in what is the largest national budget to date at $300.7B, an increase of 12.6 percent from the 2018 budget.

The minister made that and other announcements during his presentation of the 2019 National Budget in the National Assembly on Monday November 26. 2019.

Agriculture, Fishing and Forestry are forecast to grow by 3.9 per cent, sugar production is expected to increase by 15.6 per cent while rice is expected to grow steadily by 2.7 percent in 2019.

Gold declaration is expected to increase, with an industry growth projected at 2.5 percent, while bauxite will continue to grow by 8.6 percent. Meanwhile, the mining and quarrying sector is expected to expand by 3.7 per cent. Manufacturing is expected to grow by 4.2 percent, construction by 10.5 percent and services by 3.7 percent.

Minister Jordan pointed out that inflation in 2019 is expected to be 2.5 percent, but he cautioned inflationary pressures may arise as Guyana nears oil and gas production. The Minister assured the government will respond with the appropriate measures to stabilise the rate.

Meanwhile, overall, the balance of payment is expected to improve substantially to a surplus of US$15M.
The capital account is anticipated to grow robustly to a surplus of US$376.2M with the current account reflecting a lower deficit of US$361.2M.

Minister Jordan credits the improvement of the current account to a lower merchandise trade deficit of US$256.4M, as total export earnings are projected to increase, amid higher commodity prices, and increased production.

Source_ Kaieteur News – November 27. 2018

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