Government adds 102 new public service positions to 2014 Estimates of R&E
December 13, 2013
Government adds 102 new public service positions to 2014 Estimates of R&E

One hundred and two new positions in the public service have been included in the 2014 Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure.{{more}}

Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dr Ralph Gonsalves, as he presented the Estimates in the House of Assembly Tuesday, said the additional positions are necessary.

“It may seem that we are adding some positions unduly to an already heavy expenditure with salaries, but I want to assure those persons that these positions are necessary and desirable,” the Prime Minister said.

He said five positions will open at the Registry Department; three for the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning; four in Education; and 90 in the Ministry of National Security, Police, Fire and Coastguard.

The 2014 Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure, totalling EC$911.57 million, were approved late Tuesday night, by a majority of parliamentarians. The 2014 figure represents a 14.1 per cent increase over the Estimates of 2013, which stood at EC$799.12 million.

The Recurrent expenditure and amortization and sinking funds for 2014 amount to EC$654.44 million and capital expenditure is EC$257.13 million.

According to Gonsalves, the 2014 budget will be financed with recurrent revenue of EC$520.5 million and capital receipts of $291.07 million.

“There are no new initiatives or programmes in the recurring budget,” Gonsalves said.

He, however, said that the information communication technology (ICT) ministerial responsibility will be moved to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Estimates contain a current account deficit of EC$28.1 million, an increase of 2.7 per cent from the 2013 current account deficit of $25.4 million. The recurrent revenue for 2014 stands at EC$520.5 million, a 2.4 per cent increase over the approved 2013 budget.

Tax revenue is expected to contribute $464 million to the consolidated fund Gonsalves said.

He, however, added that the planners were cautious in this estimation, as they did not want to overestimate.

Non-tax revenue has increased by 45.5 per cent and it is anticipated that $56.5 million will be collected from this income.

Government is expected to collect $189.7 million from international trade in the new year and taxes on domestic transactions will contribute $115.3 million to the central government revenue.

Revenues from licenses will contribute $30.5 million, an increase of 1.1 per cent Gonsalves said and $19.8 million should be yielded under the category other revenue.

However, before the Prime Minister presented the Estimates, he spent a few minutes putting the document in perspective.

“I would like to spend just a few minutes to make some prefatory remarks. These estimates are done in the context of where we are internationally, regionally and nationally,” he said.

Recovery the world over is very slow and the economies that are dependent on services like tourism, are in the context of low, or no growth, high debt, he explained.

On the national context, he said that the country had come out of three years of negative growth from 2008 to 2010; marginal growth in 2011 and 2012; and this year there is a projection of more than 1.5 per cent, and next year 2 per cent. (DD)