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Haiti - Economy : The budget deficit 2017-2018, a sinkhole close to 26 billion
06/11/2018 10:21:17

Haiti - Economy : The budget deficit 2017-2018, a sinkhole close to 26 billion
Monday at a press conference Ronald G. Décembre, the Minister of Economy and Finance has indicated that the next budget 2018-2019 (estimated at 166 billion gourdes, after downward revision https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-25945-haiti-news-zapping.html ) which will be tabled in the coming days will be "of social orientation" in a "very difficult" economic context. Stressing that the 2017-2018 budget deficit is for the first time between 24 and 26 billion Gourdes, which has a negative effect on the value of our national currency against the US dollar.

Looking over the next budget, the Minister Dé embre confirmed that after the increases in the minimum wage in the private sector https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-25766-haiti-flash-all-details-on-new-minimum-wages.html "We are forced to adjust wages in the public service" estimating that the wage bill will increase by 4 billion gourdes in the public sector for 2018-2019.

He said that the budget of the Ministry of Public Health and Social Affairs will increase. The Ministry of Health will benefit from an increase in its budget, infrastructure will be built, of which 63 new health centers and 2 large hospitals will be inaugurated. For the Social Affairs it specifies that this will benefit the community restaurants, donations of food products, university restaurants, mobile canteens, "Kore etidyan", "Ti manman cheri", food kits, community stores, etc...

For the education sector, the representative of the Ministry of National Education presented a series of school and infrastructure constructions as a major part of the Ministry's investment program. https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-26011-haiti-politic-more-than-a-billion-for-the-construction-of-32-school-infrastructure.html

For the 2018-2019 financial year, the Ministry of Agriculture will open 96 new municipal agricultural offices (BAC), proceed to the cleaning of canals, the construction of irrigation systems including the Marion Dam https://www.icihaiti.com/en/news-25959-icihaiti-terrier-rouge-follow-up-of-the-works-of-the-dam-and-the-reservoir-of-10-million-m3.html and restructure the Ministry's human resources, 80% of whose staff must retire...

For the 2019 elections, Décembre informs that 40 million dollars are planned https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-25513-haiti-elections-jovenel-moise-met-with-the-members-of-the-cep.html

Finally, the Minister estimates that investments by the Treasury, from internal revenues will be of the order of 18 billion gourdes.

The same day in a workshop on the budget, Minister Décembre insisted on a possible adjustment of petroleum products at the pump and the suspension of subsidies to the Electricity of Haiti (EDH).

Regarding petroleum products he stressed "The price of gasoline is increasing internationally, [...] The State can no longer support this situation" ensuring that this future adjustment will not affect the transit, the State will compensate for this sector to avoid an increase, recalling that current fuel subsidies only benefit 30% of the population...

Regarding the EDH, the Minister recognizes that each year the State is forced to inject nearly 2 billion gourdes to fill the deficit of the company, recalling that for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, the subsidies to the EDH amounted to 6 billion gourdes, 3 times more than expected. He says this is one of the fundamental reasons with the fuel subsidy, which has pushed several donors to no longer support the budget of Haiti, putting the country in an economically delicate position.

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