14 April 2011
The Treasury Minister has accepted most of the recommendations made in the Corporate Services Scrutiny Panel’s report on the Fiscal Strategy Review.
In his response, Senator Philip Ozouf confirms his commitment to continuing work on the Island’s medium to long term fiscal strategy and to ensuring that the agreed savings are delivered.
He said “The Fiscal Strategy Review was a necessary response to the global economic downturn and, after extensive public consultation, was approved by the assembly during the 2011 Budget debate.
“The assembly was called upon to make difficult decisions to secure long term, sustainable public finances and long-lasting prosperity and I recognise the panel’s important contribution to the debate.
“I agree with the panel that there should be no further increases in Social Security, GST or income tax until the savings targets agreed by the assembly have been met. I am overseeing progress on the Comprehensive Spending Review so we can meet the agreed savings of £65m by 2013 and create a modern public sector that is ready for future challenges.
“Having dealt with the short term issues, we are now in a strong position and can turn our attention to the medium and longer term fiscal strategy. The tax and spending measures agreed by the States will bring our budget back into balance in 3 years and will have a positive, long-lasting effect on Jersey’s economy.
"The Tax Policy Unit’s work on a long term strategy will take into account the changes agreed and ensure a sustainable approach to tax and spending for the future.
“Jersey is in a stronger financial position than almost any other comparable jurisdiction. This hasn’t happened by accident; it is the result of prudent, long-term decision making. I am confident that we have now taken the difficult, but necessary, steps to lay the foundations for a strong economic recovery.
“We should be grateful that our forebears made provision for future downturns. There will be future challenges, and we will be prepared for them and deal with them, just as our predecessors have in the past.”