Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. Denzil Douglas said Council members – Ministers of Finance – from the eight countries, looked at the overall fiscal situation in the Eastern Caribbean.
“We recognize that our growth prospects for this year are not necessarily very encouraging. We might be seeing negative, or maybe just about 1.2 percent positive growth and so there is a concern that we need to put right our own fiscal and monetary policies and to look at how we can really grow the economies of the Easter Caribbean out of the serious challenging situation that we are facing today,” said Dr. Douglas.
He noted that St. Kitts and Nevis, like Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda, have financial assistance programmes with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
“We looked at these programmes. We looked at the challenge of the debt situation and how we need to formulate a regional debt management strategy in order to tackle one of the greatest challenges that our people are facing at this particular time. So it was a very important meeting, it was also educational and strategic and basically planning strategies in moving forward in tackling a number of these issues,” said Prime Minister Douglas.
Prime Minister Douglas also announced that the council members welcomed back St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony.
“It was important to bring him up to date and for us to discuss at the start of a new year pressing financial and economic matters including the ongoing fiscal and debt and growth issues that are confronting the people of the Eastern Caribbean at this particular time,” Prime Minister Douglas disclosed on his weekly radio programme “Ask the Prime Minister” on Tuesday.