While I am not entirely happy with the lack of spending cuts or the increase of Value Added Tax (VAT) to 12% I must give two cheers to the government for stepping up to the plate with a serious plan to tackle the structural problems with the country's finances.
However, it was astounding to learn there was some $360 million of outstanding old bills/contractual obligations that were not even accounted for. Figuratively speaking, someone's proverbial head should roll.
I heard it said that the government cannot prosecute someone for stupid contracts or mistakes yet the rules pertaining to publicly traded companies have measures or penalties for negligence.
What's the difference?
Back to the budget for a second.
The new government has been pretty specific with their intentions to get the country out of the fiscal quagmire it's in so we have targets we can watch going forward over the next twelve months. I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt for a few months primarily because they are the first government in decades to attempt to reset the fiscal trajectory to something more realistic.
We knew this day had to come because we just could not continue borrowing ad infinitum instead of raising taxes. That was senseless, yet successive governments did it. Pragmatism finally comes out on top with the country's budget. Now let's hope it works for the sake of future generations.
We should all bear TANSTAAFL (The Free Lunch Myth) in mind.