More than $2 million in funding has already been approved for businesses in Abaco and Grand Bahama that were affected by Hurricane Dorian, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest said yesterday, explaining that those funds will help businesses to foster economic growth.
Turnquest, who made the statements in the House of Assembly during his contribution to the 2019/2020 mid-year budget debate, explained that the government has focused on building capacity in the private sector while simultaneously assisting with post-Dorian restructuring and reconstruction.
“I am happy to announce that $2.2 million has already been approved in funding for businesses affected by the hurricane,” Turnquest said.
“That’s right, $2.2 million is being injected into the economies of Grand Bahama and Abaco through small businesses to help them restart, rebuild, and recover.
“I seem to recall the member for Exuma and Ragged Island blasting this administration days after we published the 2019 Fiscal Strategy Report, claiming we were too focused on managing deficits instead of fostering economic growth. While the side opposite might be incapable of multitasking, we are demonstrating true governance by being able to handle all our responsibilities at the same time.
“We are putting direct funds into the dreams and aspirations of hundreds of Bahamian entrepreneurs and building their capacity to create and nurture successful businesses to foster growth as he himself has stated should be our goal.”
Turnquest added that government will also inject money directly into the economy through capital projects in order to stimulate economic activity and create jobs, while using tax relief incentives to assist families during the recovery.
“We are making our presence felt and using the resources at our disposal to provide tax relief and cash injections to affected individuals and the people who are most vulnerable,” he said.
“No matter how many times the opposition tries to convince the Bahamian people that we must choose between taking care of people, effectively managing the public purse and driving economic growth, we will reject that false choice.”