Concrete signs of economic recovery

Concrete signs of economic recovery
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, K. Peter Turnquest.

Deputy Prime Minister Peter Turnquest said Monday that he is “pleased to see concrete signs of economic recovery” based on the 2017 economic data published by the Department of Statistics last week.

In a statement released yesterday, Turnquest, who is also the Minister of Finance said, the growth in real gross domestic product (GDP) of 1.4 per cent in 2017 is in line with previous forecasts made by the government.  

“I am confident that when the full weight of the administration’s policies takes hold, we shall continue the momentum of positive economic growth, reversing the chronic economic stagnation that had characterized the previous ten years,” the statement read.

“The facts bear out that investor and consumer confidence is finally on the rise once again in The Bahamas. The 13 per cent growth in gross fixed capital formation is a positive indication that businesses are increasing their investment output and economic impact. The nine per cent increase in household consumption also confirms signs of the economic recovery.”

Turnquest said while it is a positive start, it is “far too early to declare victory” in the country’s economic fortune.

“We still have much work to do and tough decisions to make, to get our fiscal house in order and to reverse the persistent deficits and growth in debt that could derail any economic recovery,” Turnquest wrote.

“We also have to quicken the pace of structural reforms and economic transformation if The Bahamas is to keep pace in an increasingly competitive modern global economy.

“As such, the Ministry of Finance will continue to work aggressively to implement the government’s transformational socio-economic growth agenda that will guide us over the next four years. Throughout, we will be fully transparent and accountable to the people and we will provide the good governance that Bahamians rightfully deserve.”

The country’s GDP grew by 2.7 per cent in 2017, according to the latest figures released by the Department of Statistics (DOS) last week.

In a statement, the DOS said the main industries contributing to this growth were “construction, wholesale and retail trade, business services of a professional nature, administrative business services and arts.”

Government consumption increased by 12 per cent and household consumption increased by nine per cent, according to the statement, as gross fixed capital (GFC) formation also grew by 13 per cent.