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Prime Minister King urges Saint Lucians to be prudent in spending and consumption

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Contact: Adhara King

Tuesday, February 10, 2009 – In light of the current global economic crisis, Saint Lucia’s Prime Minister, The Honourable Stephenson King says government is undergoing a consultative process in order to remedy the situation.

The Prime Minister made the comment whilst addressing the House of Assembly during its first sitting for 2009.

He outlined the bleak global economic landscape, focusing on its negative impact on tourism and foreign investment in Saint Lucia.

“The IMF in its latest forecast of the global economy, estimates that the global economy will grow by only 0.5 percent in 2009 compared with 3.4 percent in 2008. The economies of the more industrialized countries are projected to contract by 2 percent in 2009- the first time since the end of World War II.”

In response to the crisis, the Prime Minister said countries have implemented various policy responses involving accommodative monetary policy, and fiscal stimulus packages.

Saint Lucia’s economy experienced marginal growth in 2008, the Prime Minister said, and as such government is investigating measures that are supportive of economic growth.

“The vulnerable, poor and indigent will not be ignored as we are carefully examining a number of social safety-net interventions. My government will take on board the various recommendations arising from the consultative process that we have started.”

Prime Minister King said government is currently reviewing the retail price of fuel, and will make a pronouncement during the upcoming budget.

In concluding his statement during the House sitting, the Prime Minister appealed to the nation to focus on improving productivity while remaining prudent in spending and consumption.

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