BRADES, Montserrat (GIU) -- Premier Reuben Meade will unveil the Montserrat government’s fiscal and development plans on Monday, when he presents his 2014/2015 budget.
Premier Reuben Meade
Meade, who is also the minister of finance, economic management and tourism, will present his annual budget during a sitting of the Legislative Assembly on Monday afternoon.
The premier is expected to outline further measures to stimulate Montserrat’s economy, still recovering from volcanic activity.
According to the Budget Performance and Outlook for the quarter ended December 31, 2013, the five key sectors which continue to contribute the majority of economic activity are; public administration, defence and compulsory social security, real estate and housing, financial intermediation, transport, storage an communications and construction.
The other key sectors identified as potential growth sectors within the sustainable development plan are agriculture, mining and quarrying and hotels and restaurants
The agriculture sector was anticipated to experience modest growth during the fiscal year but updated data has indicated that the growth in the sector will be greater than previously forecast. The growth forecast has been revised upwards from 3.28% for the financial year to about 25%.
The revenue projections include additional budgetary aid to clear outstanding amounts owed to the University of the West Indies.
The government also anticipates utilizing savings on spending toward clearing other high priority commitments. These may include alleviation of pressures on the health services budget, Montserrat Utilities Limited, MUL generator set, maintenance of Public Works Department plant and equipment as well as revenue refunds.
The premier is also expected release his latest spending proposals and will likely to stress greater efficiency within the public sector.
The total budget allocation for last fiscal year was $179 million. This figure represented an increase of over $52 million from the previous year.
Last year’s estimated revenue from local sources was expected to yield $45 million. Grants for funding the recurrent budget were $56 million for a total recurrent expenditure of $101 million. This represented a slight decrease from the 2012 approved budget.