Commonwealth Of The Bahamas
2011/12 Budget Communication
Presented to the House of Assembly by
Prime Minister Hubert A. Ingraham, M.P. Minister of Finance
on Wednesday, 25th May, 2011
Budget-making is one of the most significant responsibilities of a national Government. Through the annual Budget the Government sets out its vision in respect of the economic and social priorities that it will pursue.
In that regard, the preparation of the annual Budget requires, in the face of limited and precious public financial resources, the making of difficult decisions, choices and trade-offs that are attuned to the economic and social needs of the country.
Through the Budget, the Government translates its vision of the future into concrete policies and initiatives that will bring about the societal objectives and outcomes that are of paramount importance to citizens. Successful budget-making is the hallmark of effective Government. It is not a task for indecision, complacency or procrastination.
My Government has, over the course of its three terms in Office, been consistent in its pursuit of effective Budgets that meet the needs of Bahamian society. Three years ago, as the first waves of what was to become the Great Global Recession began reaching our shores, we decisively chose to begin using some of the fiscal headroom established through prudent economic and fiscal policies. We stated explicitly that we would allow the Government Debt to GDP ratio to move upwards from the range of 30% to 35% that had judiciously and prudently been achieved.
This permitted us to implement measures to provide relief and assistance to Bahamians, as well as significantly increase capital expenditure from the previous year to support employment and further bolster our commitment to modernizing and expanding our public infrastructure.
We implemented key legislation to stimulate and support the revitalization of the city of Nassau and embarked on an ambitious and massive infrastructural work programme that will
2give New Providence the infrastructure of a modern, progressive city and make it hugely attractive and more environmentally sustainable. We will also ensure that it is a truly world-class destination. And we have introduced a legislative framework to encourage investment in our least developed islands.
Full Budget Communication (740PDF)