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Budget to Reflect Continued Economic Growth and Pave Way for Unparalleled Construction and Development

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Contact: Prime Minister's Press Secretary

Monday, April 24, 2006 - The 2006-2007 Budget to be presented by Prime Minister Dr Kenny D. Anthony tomorrow -- the ninth since he assumed the position of Minister of Finance in May 1997 – is expected to report a continued level of unprecedented economic growth and open the way for an unparalleled level of construction and developmental activity throughout the country.

On November 7, 1997, six months after the May 23, 1997 General Election, It became necessary for the new Government of Saint Lucia to present a Supplementary Budget, in which the new Prime Minister sought to lay the foundations to “Stabilize the Economy and Redefine its Priorities.” The Prime Minister indicated back then that “Better days will be here if we do the right things now.”

On April 21, 1998 Prime Minister Anthony presented his second Budget Statement to the Second Session of the Seventh Parliament of Saint Lucia. In keeping with the needs of the times, the theme of that second Budget Address was “Stimulating and Reorienting the Economy Towards Sustained Growth.”

The Prime Minister's third Budget Address -- for the period 1999-2000 -- was presented a year later on March 23, 1999 to the Third Session of the Seventh Parliament; and, as its theme suggested, it was aimed at “Institutional Reform, Economic Consolidation and Social Recovery.”

The 2000-2001 Budget – the fourth by Dr Anthony -- was presented on March 21, 2000 to the Fourth Session of the Seventh Parliament, with the strategic objective of “Strengthening, Modernizing and repositioning the Economy.”

The 2001-2002 Budget, the first after the Labour Party's December 2001 second election victory and the Prime Minister's fifth, was presented to the First Session of the Eighth Parliament, under the theme “Inspiring and Sustaining Development In a Changing World.”

The Budget Address for 2002-2003, presented to the Second Session of the Eighth Parliament, was delivered on April 30, 2002 and was aimed at “Enhancing Investment, Revitalizing Agriculture and Stimulating Recovery.”

The Budget Address for the financial year 2003-2004, which was presented on April 8, 2003, had as its theme “Advancing Infrastructural development and Economic Recovery in an Uncertain World.”

The Budget Address for the financial year 2005-2005 was delivered to the Fourth Session of the Eighth Parliament of Saint Lucia on April 20, 2004 under the theme “Strengthening, Modernizing and Repositioning the Economy.”

The last Budget Address for the financial year 2005-2006 was presented a year ago on April 19, 2005 under the theme “Consolidating Gains, Developing a World Class Destination and Enhancing Human Resource Capacity.”

The budget for 2006-2007, which will be presented by the Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, International Financial Services, Economic Affairs and Information tomorrow, will be the last before the next General Elections.

The Prime Minister says it will reflect a continued pattern of unprecedented growth and pave the way for a similarly unprecedented level of construction and development projects for the next financial year.

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