Senior Minister in the Office of the President with Responsibility for Finance, Dr Ashni Singh has said that the 2024 budget will reflect an unwavering dedication to the implementation of policies that improve the well-being of Guyanese.
He reminded that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic Government’s manifesto was meticulously crafted using a people-centred approach.
These manifesto promises, he said, will continue to guide the policies in each budget.
“Everything that we do in our budget revolves around the objective of improving the lives of every single Guyanese citizen,” he opined during a pre-budget interview with the National Communications Network (NCN) last evening.
Within this scope, maintaining high economic growth remains a policy goal for the government, as well as continued strong investments in transformative infrastructure, which is integral to the short and long-term well-being of the country.
“A more modern and integrated transport network also means an environment that is more conducive to investment, because people are better able to set up factories, warehouses, and commercial office spaces, because it is easier to do business,” he said.
He also pointed to the investments in energy infrastructure, through projects such as the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project and the Gas to Shore pipeline, to further illustrate this point.
According to the minister, these are examples that manifest a commitment to improving the well being of people.
The building out of community roads, for example, which is an essential project that the government has embarked on, has empowered countless Guyanese with improved connectivity and transportation links.
“It may look like an investment in a road, but it goes to the core of the well-being of people. It may look like an investment in a hospital. You may think ‘If I’m not a doctor, what does that have to do with me?’. Well, it has nothing to do with you until you are ill and need the services of the hospital, and then you will discover that it has everything to do with your well-being to continue working and being active in your family, and your well-being to continue being an active member of society,” Dr Singh reasoned.
Continued investment in social services, and support for vulnerable groups will also be embedded in the 2024 budget.
Last year, the finance minister presented a $781.9 billion budget, the first to be partially financed by revenue earned from Guyana’s historic sale of carbon credits.
Presented under the theme Improving Lives today, Building Prosperity for Tomorrow, the 2023 budget brought to the forefront several large-scale projects to support Guyana’s infrastructural transformation, critical investments in boosting the agriculture, education, and health sectors, and a strong focus on increasing disposable income.
That trend is set to advance in this year’s budget, the finance minister affirmed.