Finance and the Public Service Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, says public debt servicing is below 40 per cent of the National Budget.
“It is at 37.4 per cent. This is significant because we all remember the days in both governments when we had debt servicing in excess of 60 per cent (and) at one stage as high as 65 per cent,” he said.
The Minister made the disclosure during a meeting of the Standing Finance Committee in the House of Representatives on February 28.
Mr. Shaw explained that the total provision for debt servicing is $289 billion or 37.4 per cent of the “overall expenditure budget, including amortisation”.
“This comprises $137 billion in interest payments and $152 billion in principal payments. This represents a significantly lower level of payment, 23.7 per cent lower than the $378.6 billion in debt service payments estimated for the fiscal year 2017/2018,” he noted.
Mr. Shaw attributed the reduced debt service payments to the lower levels of debt maturing in 2018/2019, such as “the early redemption of bonds undertaken through the liability management operations of 2016/2017 and 2017/2018”.