PRAYER ALERT on stimulating growth. The BCCI (Belize Chamber of Commerce & Industry) recently released a comprehensive plan for cost-efficient government and stimulating growth in the economy. If implemented, this plan could both reassure Belize’s Superbond creditors and attract more investors. Here are more key strategies from BCCI.
- Use e-government technology to streamline government, increase efficiency and minimize corruption.
- Require accountability for all government funds spent and overspent.
- Put GPS monitors on government vehicles to prevent non-government use.
- Expedite court cases for the 475 prisoners now on remand, who cost Belize $2.5 million per year for food and housing.
- Improve policing so tourists, buyers and investors won’t fear becoming targets of thieves.
- Boost job creation and productivity, thus stimulating growth, by modernizing the Labour Act for more flexibility in employment hours.
- Develop more resources for every border station to improve duty collection.
- Set a border exit tax at $10 per person to discourage spending money outside of Belize. This would bring an estimated $15 million into Belize coffers.
- Increase cruise tourist arrival head tax by US $10 thus raising another estimated $15 million.
- Train International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) employees to attract and register more companies. For every 20 companies registered per year, Belize coffers would gain $21.5 million.
- For foreigners who invest more than US $10 million in Belize, provide economic citizenship for US $25,000 each. This would raise an estimated $250 million over 3 years. It would require anti-corruption measures like UN Commission Against Corruption to be implemented first.
- Match investors with entrepreneurs, especially encouraging the Belizean diaspora to invest, thus stimulating growth in Belize.
- Negotiate better market access to Mexico, Latin America, Taiwan and Japan.
- Offer creditors like poverty-stricken Venezuela Belizean food and other goods instead of money to pay our debts.
- Showcase Belizean products and investment opportunities abroad with more strategic and publicized trade shows, and cooperation with embassy personnel.
- And many more…
While not exhaustive, such strategies need implementation ASAP to prevent the Belize’s recession from sliding into a currency devaluation. God has answered our prayers with a plan. He says His plan is “to prosper you and not to harm you” (Jer. 29:11). The plan will succeed if “you call on Me and come to pray to Me, and…seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you… (verses 12-13).
PRAY WITH US. Father God, we thank You for Jesus’ intercession on the cross, and now in heaven. We thank You that because of Him, Your ear is attentive to our prayers. Thank You for answering so many prayers for Belize. And we thank You for a plan to prosper and not to harm us. A plan for stimulating growth, and not sinking into depression. A plan for paying our debts, and not becoming the bondservant of an oppressive Superbond.
Now show us how to put Your plan into action. We ask for government favor and for creditor confidence. We ask for grace periods for debts due, and amazing grace allowances to pay them. Do not let the devil come to steal or destroy any more. For Your Son has come that we may have life, and have it abundantly. Let Your grace flow abundantly in Spirit-led entrepreneurship, wise investment, greater employment, expanding markets, and greater returns.
Clear away government bureaucracy and corruption, and establish government efficiency and accountability. Do not let an Antichrist economy enslave us. Instead let Your divine economy enable us. Bring glory to Your name by raising up Josephs and rewarding Your good and faithful servants. For when we are faithful with a little—and Belize has only a little—You promise to give us more. Multiply Your favor to show creditors, investors, and all the world how great You are. In Jesus’ name, amen.
DailyInsight. Seek wisdom first, and you will also get wealth. Seek wealth first, and you will lose both (see 1 Tim. 6:6-10).
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