Mr. Speaker, this sixth Budget of this People’s National Movement administration is being delivered against the backdrop of a vibrant and growing economy.
I am pleased to have the opportunity to present to this Honourable House and indeed to the national community, a comprehensive account of our stewardship over the past five years, outlining our many successes and the challenges that we have faced.
Mr. Speaker, as we intend to be in Government for the next five years, I also propose to couch the Budget for fiscal year 2008 in the context of a longer term plan, which in essence represents yet another phase in our journey towards Vision 2020.
It is against this background that the theme of this year’s Budget Presentation is "Vision 2020: Determined to Reach our Goal".
Honourable Members, the completion of the documents laid in this Honourable House today could not have been possible without the commitment, enthusiasm and the hard work and sacrifice of the many public officers, especially those in the Ministry of Finance, who have worked long and tirelessly on preparing these documents.
I want to let them know that their efforts are greatly appreciated. I would also like to thank my Cabinet colleagues, and all the individuals and organizations who have contributed to the process which resulted in the preparation of these documents.
Mr. Speaker, in order to put our record of performance into its proper perspective we must remind our citizens of the Government’s vision for Trinidad and Tobago and the strategy that will get us there.