Y2000 is going to be a challenging year, both for the economy and the government. Despite a commitment by both major parties to have elections within the time-bound Herdmanston Accord, there remain considerable doubts about the feasibility of these elections being held within that time.

Whilst many would have hoped for a Budget that broke from the recent past with vision and creativity, perhaps the Budget presented by Minister Kowlessar was what he and his Government considered most feasible given all the circumstances.

There still seems a marked reluctance to respond to the pleas of the Private Sector. On the other hand, the Private Sector is hardly distinguishing itself by courage, innovation or commitment to the general good of the country.

Minister Kowlessar deserves the understanding of his fellow Guyanese for attempting to prepare his Budget in the most difficult administrative arrangements possible. He needs to be given far more authority and more technical resources to manage the Ministry of Finance and Budget 2000 effectively. Unless this is done the economy will continue to move at a pedestrian pace when what is needed is rapid acceleration.

Ram & McRae
Chartered Accountants

March 27, 2000