Yes bloggers, here in ROFTI the illegal Interim Minister of Finance Voreqe Bainimarama will be delivering the 2009 National Budget to the People at the Tradewinds Convention Centre.
It has been advised that we should not hold our breath as there will be no election allocation so no general election in March 2009 as promised at the Pacific Forum in Tonga in 2007.
Oh and just to put things into perspective, I just thought I would highlight a few key statistics figures here for bloggers to chew on while the 2009 budget is being delivered by the mother of all pigs Baini Marama today!
Fiji’s consumer price index reached a new 20-year high of 9.8 per cent in September 2008, compared with 4.1 per cent in September 2007
The present international rating of Fiji’s “Overall Outlook”, both by Standard & Poors and Moody’s ratings, has deteriorated from “Stable” in 2006 to “Negative” in 2008.
Further, Fiji’s foreign reserves are around $F860.8 million and are equivalent to only 3.2 months of imports of goods.
While export earnings are declining as highlighted in the last article, import costs of food and other essentials are on the rise.
With recessionary conditions in New Zealand, Australia and America, remittance inflows would decrease and tourist arrivals would also show a similar trend.
The illegal Fiji Government needs to re-look its spending and drastically cut down on non productive expenses such as the huge chunk now chewed up by the Military, overseas junkets by the illegal cabinet and senior public servants, non productive court cases and stupid programs such as the NCFBB etc.
They have no choice but to find areas to make big impact in lowering operational cost and re-directing these savings into building key and vital infrastructure such as roads and bridges, utilities supply excess and ports of calls to stimulate the export sector be it tourism or rural manufacturing to generate more (and mainly export oriented) economic activities and let the multiplier effect take its natural course.