Member of Parliament for St. John’s Rural West Richard Lewis has cautioned the government that projections of economic growth for Antigua & Barbuda mean very little to the average person.
During the Budget Debate in the Lower House of Parliament on Thursday (March 9), Lewis noted that despite the grandiose economic reports, many individuals are struggling to make ends meet.
Lewis said that economic growth should not be used as the sole factor in determining the country’s true state of affairs.
The Rural West MP suggested that other measures such as inflation, unemployment and disparity in income and wealth distribution should be taken into consideration when fully examining the country’s fiscal situation.
He was responding to Finance Minister and Prime Minister Gaston Browne’s Budget presentation which claimed that the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) reported a 8.5 percent growth rate for this country for 2022 and forecasted a 9.4 percent growth rate for this year.
Lewis debunked the prime minister’s claims that the average growth of 8.2 percent over the past three years is unprecedented.
The Rural West MP noted that the UPP administration recorded a higher average growth rate for the 2005-2007 period.