IMF report ‘ringing bells’ about state of the economy – Jagdeo

first_imgA recent report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has highlighted the dire state of the Guyanese economy, which Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo says careful attention should be paid to.Having looked at the report in its entirety, Jagdeo said it has highlighted some important facts and is also “ringing some bells about our future and state of our economy.”In referring to some content of that report, Jagdeo noted that the report has highlighted the fact that credit to business sector grew by 0.9 per cent in 2017, which is less than one per cent.“That’s less than inflation. That there is a high level of nonperforming loans. That we have a large exposure as a percentage of capital,” he read from the report.Jagdeo bemoaned the fact that the report noted that the IMF looked at several countries where the average is 20 per cent, but in Guyana’s case it is 160 per cent of capital (level of exposure).He also pointed to another fact in the report is the low level of provisioning coverage as a percentage of non-performing loans. “So if you have to provide for them, it will affect seriously the profitability of most of our banks. These are very important points in that report,” he added.In addition to that, the report also pointed to corresponding banking relationships still being an issue.The IMF noted that fiscal deficit remained stable in 2017. The Government deficit was 4.5 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), lower than the budgeted 5.6 per cent. This better than expected outturn was largely supported by higher revenue arising from improvements in tax administration.In 2018, the deficit is projected to widen to 5.4 per cent of GDP due to the cost of restructuring the sugar industry, including severance payments to displaced workers, as well as an increase in infrastructure related capital expenditure.Guyana’s last best growth rate was 5.2 per cent in 2013. World Bank records show Guyana’s growth rates in 2014 was 3.8 per cent, 2015 3.2 per cent, and 2016 3.3 per cent. Finance Minister Winston Jordan had claimed that the poor performance was linked the dismal figures to sectors including sugar.However, as the IMF focused on the fiscal outlook for Guyana’s in its recent report, it noted that the country’s medium-term prospects are favourable. The commencement of oil production in 2020 will be a turning point. The main direct effect on the domestic economy will be through higher fiscal revenue, and spillovers to supporting activities. The balance of payments will swing sharply to positive after 2020.“Oil revenue significantly improves the fiscal outlook, and is expected to place the public debt on a downward trajectory. The mission welcomed the progress made on establishing a comprehensive fiscal framework for managing oil wealth,” it explained.An important point made by the IMF was the fact that debt sustainability concerns are weakened by future oil revenues, but it warned that the financing of short-term deficits should be carefully managed.“The mission supports the authorities’ prudence towards private external borrowing. The authorities were encouraged to rely to the extent possible on development banks, including non-concessional financing, and to follow-up on their plans to develop the domestic bond market,” it added. Meanwhile, notwithstanding significant upside benefits, the prospect of revenue from the oil sector could lead to real exchange rate appreciation, eroding competitiveness in some sectors.Nevertheless, Jagdeo and his party has long argued that the coalition Government does not have what it takes to manage the affairs of the local economy.He has spoken repeatedly about the increasing debt portfolio by constantly borrowing millions ahead of the impending oil and gas sector.The former Head of State maintains that the People’s Progressive Party is best suited to handle both the economic and social affairs of the country on any given day.last_img read more

Liverpool starting line up to play Bournemouth tonight – Klopp’s shock selection

first_img 11 11 11 11 11. Roberto Firmino 11 6. Dejan Lovren 27. Divock Origi 33. Jordon Ibe 24. Joe Allen 11. Roberto Firmino 34. Adam Bogdan 56. Connor Randall 11 32. Cameron Brannagan 11 Liverpool host Bournemouth in the fourth round of the League Cup on Wednesday evening, looking for their first win under Jurgen Klopp.Since replacing Brendan Rodgers as Reds boss, Klopp has seen his side draw three times – against Spurs and Southampton in the Premier League and Rubin Kazan in the Europa League.It will be the club’s third consecutive match at Anfield and, while some see an improvement in performances under Klopp, they are still yet to win under his stewardship.Liverpool are fortunate to still be in the competition though, after edging through on penalties against League Two Carlisle last time out, but Klopp will surely see the League Cup as an opportunity to win silverware in his first season on Merseyside.Klopp gave little clues of his starting XI in his press conference ahead of the match, but he will definitely be without the suspended James Milner, who received his fifth booking of the season in the Saints draw on Sunday.He also has a number of injuries to contend with, including captain Jordan Henderson and long-term absentees Joe Gomez and Danny Ings, while he says some of his squad are carrying minor problems picked up against Southampton.  Christian Benteke will miss out with a knee injury that could also make him unavailable for Saturday’s game away to Chelsea.Daniel Sturridge is still sidelined with a knee injury, after Klopp said he was making good progress but was not yet fit enough to be football training despite working in the gym with the physiotherapist.This will be Liverpool’s third match in six days, therefore Klopp said he would be making changes to his side.Rumour has it that the German will give a Liverpool debut to Academy graduate Connor Randall, at right back, while fellow youngsters Cameron Brannagan and Joao Texeira will also start the game, in midfield and attack, respectively.Bournemouth, meanwhile, will be hoping to return to winning ways after a 5-1 thrashing at home to Tottenham in the league on Sunday.They have already face Liverpool this season, in the Premier League, when the Reds were 1-0 winners at Anfield in August.So who will make the starting XI? Take a look at our predicted line up by clicking the yellow arrow above right, and comment below with the side which you would pick to face Eddie Howe’s men.Read in full here – Daniel Sturridge ruled out of Bournemouth clash as Jurgen Klopp refuses to set date for return 11 4. Kolo Toure – take a look at the full line up, in squad number order, by clicking the arrow above! And let us know what you think of our predicted team by leaving a comment below 11 53. Joao Texeira 11 11last_img read more