Friday, March 19, 2010

Business Monitor International rankings

The recent (March 2010) issue of the BMI's Latin America and Caribbean Monitor gives Guyana a very low ranking for a number of areas. BMI has also provided a scathing outlook and its own projection of growth for Guyana.
A summary:

Guyana scores 38.1 in BMI's business environment ratings, ranking it 117th out of 167 states.

"According to Finance Minister Ashni Singh, sugar production will add 1.0 percentage points to real GP growth in 2010, in contract with our own more cautious stance on state-owned Guyana Sugar Corporation's growth potential. as a result, we hold to our 3.5% real GDP forecast for 2010."

BMI view on Government
"Domestic opposition to government intervention in the economy is becoming the biggest threat to the ruling People's Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) electoral hopes in 2011. with little chance of a constitutional amendment to allow President Bharrat Jagdeo to stand for re-election,t he party will be hard pushed to regain its majority, in our view."

BMI's view on Data and forecasts
"Our concerns over Guyana's fiscal woes have been exacerbated by the Government's 2010 national budget, which pledges a substantial uptick in infrastructure and social expenditure. If revenue flows fail to meet government's expectations - which we expect will be the case given that our own 3.5% real GDP growth forecast for 2010 is lower than Government's 4.4% forecast - the fiscal gap could be substantially above 2009 levels. Until we get a clear breakdown of the planned budgetary expenditure, we hold to our GY22.3bln (or 7.9% of GDP) central government deficit forecast.

UPDATE (WPG update)
WPG has been reliably informed that the Norwegian's LCDS promise is evaporating faster than the carbon emissions. The money will now be tied up in the World Bank's coffers until that institution is satisfied that proper accountability is in place for its use.

The LCDS fund was the main source of funding for the Government's fiber optic cable and the road to Amalia falls. Since that is now uncertain, we opine that Jagdeo will force Finance Minister to get Parliamentary release of funds for those projects.

With a clear majority in parliament, they will get what they want - resulting in greater deficits per the BMI projections.

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