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Should T&T borrow its way out of adjustment?*

Trinidad Express / AT last Thursday’s post-Cabinet news conference, Prime Minister Keith Rowley reiterated a statement he had made the night before at a political meeting in St Augustine: The Government that he leads does not intend to continue borrowing to maintain the lifestyle to which Trinbagonians have become accustomed. Dr Rowley said: “If you find yourself with a salary that is considerably reduced, would you embark on a path to keep spending and behaving the same way you behaved when you had the bigger salary? “If you do that, how long will you do that for? You will run yourself into bankruptcy and you might lose your wife and children. “Responsibility requires that the government and people…don’t do that. We cannot borrow to maintain our lifestyle, indefinitely. We can borrow strategically to position ourselves to treat with the challenges, but to borrow to stay comfortable going forward is to fall over a cliff.” Last week, as well, shortly after the commentary on this page was published, my main adviser called me to suggest that the solution to the country’s problems would be for the Government to borrow enough money to avoid the country having to undertake the kind of adjustment that has been recommended in this space.

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