Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Do we Maldivians want economic development?

In an earlier post, I talked about the importance of developing the private sector in our country. We need to urgently focus our attention on this for many reasons; one, our fiscal expenditure and deficit is already extremely high, and unsustainable; two, in order to achieve economic growth we need investments in the private sector. We are already very heavily reliant on the tourism sector, and so in order to diversify our economy we need to increase investments in other sectors.

It's disheartening that our focus has shifted more on politics, rather than reforming our economy, and improving productivity in the country. There are many important issues and obstacles for economic growth in our country, and we need to talk about it, address them as soon as we can. Maybe most of the politicians do not understand fully the real consequences, and dangers of economic hardships. When the public comes out, and demonstrates on the road due to economic harships, even the military or police may not be able to stop them. My point is, it's time we all debated about improving our economy, increasing incomes, and achieving economic development. The Parliament must be now debating bills and passing legislation in order to bring about economic reforms and increasing government revenue, reducing government expenditure, and developing the private sector. The government needs to formulate a reform bill and present to the parliament, ways to reduce government expenditure, especially, a detailed plan to reduce government employees and wage bill. Such a plan should have details of compensation packages for those who get unemployed in the short run. It also needs to include plans to developing the private sector, and job creation. The point is, any austerity plan put forward by the government needs to be transparent, and so the parliament and the public endorse it.

The Parliamentarians need to believe that our fiscal deficit was above 20 percent of GDP last year, and the state wage bill is extremely high and unsustainable.

Talking about developing the private sector, there are many talented businessmen as parliamentarians. I'm sure the country would be able to get a better contribution from them, if they were concentrating full time on their private businesses.

The media needs to focus more and divert the public's attention more on the economic issues, instead of wasting resources and time on useless and unproductive battles between DRP and MDP.

Some times I just wonder, do we really want economic development?

1 comment:

  1. But I thought the government already has a good economic plan!