Jamaica warned against becoming “The Greece of the Western Hemisphere”

January 9th, 2013

If the New Year did not begin badly enough for Jamaica with the lack of an International Monetary Fund (IMF) deal, then hearing that a leading United States newspaper has warned against the island becoming “The Greece of the Western Hemisphere”, would certainly do it.

An article in the Chicago Tribune stated that Jamaica’s debt crisis is in worse economic form than Greece and in fact, Jamaica has more debt in relation to the size of its economy than any other country. Since the island’s debt is currently estimated at J$1.7 trillion, I can very well believe this.

The Chicago Tribune proposes that if Jamaica is to become financially/economically stable, it needs “a restructuring, and a bailout with significant debt relief”. According to the paper, “No way can a small economy that has limped along with growth at less than half the global average for two decades pay back the fortune that it owes”.

So, what do you think of this information? What do you propose Jamaica do to reduce its debt? Go ahead and have your say…

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12 Responses to “Jamaica warned against becoming “The Greece of the Western Hemisphere””

  1. Jo Bent says:

    Jamaica is no Greece, those ppl
    were aware of their delimma and
    continue to strive as a nation to
    inprove their country out of love
    patriotism, and going back to living
    within their means.
    Chicago news should not have to tell
    of the fact we are dirt poor getting
    poorer and in dire straits, I C anarchy
    soon & man NYAM man like nothing.The
    attitutes have to be changed here
    laziness, scamming, low morals and the
    thiefing leaders have to step down.
    Our leaders on both sides have demonstrated
    that they lack vision, common sense,
    love of country, leadership qualities,
    integrity & common decency. Every time
    I hear them spew $#(+ on TV I want to vomit’
    personally i believe 2030 VISION is the biggest lie

  2. cherry march says:

    me feel bad but a true. madam prime minister face the facts and do the right thing by telling the truth to the people of Jamaica that u have to take serious actions and it will hurt, but jamaica will not be brought to its knees on a world stage. just do it and plan what u intend to do. another thing- if you should ever run again please dont promise anything to anyone because if you win you will have to deliver and I am talking about the expensive cars and the promised. jobs that Jamaica can’t. afford. this is wasted money. get some new people to brainstorm with I mean people who think out of the box.

  3. Wayne Harty says:

    The comparison to Greese, although, insightful, could perhaps be more on point if we were refering to grease, as for practically every transaction in the la la land of Jamaica, the outstretched, turned-up palm is the order of the day. Fittingly, perhaps, the fact that China is very involved in helping to keep the country afloat and we should all then be hoping for a breaking up of (our relationshiop) with China to ensure that grease will run all over us and allow everyone to be smothered in it.

  4. justin says:

    jamaica is in a bad state but not at greece level. We have more potential & more resources. We have the added benefit of location. The issue jamaica has is lack of leadership. 10 years of strick responsible & innovative management & jamaica has the ability to cut its debt in half

  5. Barbara Book says:

    We’ve borrowed ourselves into a financial hole that we can’t get out of.

    How does a small country like Jamaica have 1.7 trillion dollar debt?


    I.E. CUT THE CABINET, Cut the government payroll, stop importing 2 Billion dollars worth of food, reduce our dependence on FOREIGN oil. I could go on, but….

  6. Jermaine says:

    Im a Londoner recently vistited our beautiful country for the 1st time in 10 years, im a 26 year old accountant, and yes Jamaica does spend beyond its means just like Britain does but its no Greece. Greece’s is biggest mistake was joinging the EU when it couldnt afford the €79bn annual membership, the impoverished Greeks banks lied about their cash positions and borrowed huge amounts from British, French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese banks as it could as an EU nation they then filtered those loans down to the public and government neither could afford the repayments. The Prime minister should not be thinking of complete indepence from the British Monarchy at this moment in time Jamaica is not fit enough to go it alone, the country needs a brand new government and new politics with the sole aim of repaying the national debt (part not all) and developing the island to the standard of living other islands of its size enjoy maybe strike a currency deal with the US or Britain to use their currency instead of JMD untill the econmy was stable enough for enable JMD to strengthen so that it goes further J$40 for a box juice although its less then 40p just sounds way to high and ridiculous. Although Jamaica has come some way since 2000 she still has a long way to go, the government should be jumping on the studies for Canabis and promoting the qualities so that when the US, EU, UK, China etc finally agree to legalise it Jamaica could be the main provider of pure Sativa. The government should be trying to persuade more global companies to invest and should be encouraging the supermarkets to invest in the islands farmers the soil is fertile anything can grow. The main issues on that island is that the government sees how lazy and sluggish alot of Jamaicans are and takes advantage by doing nothing to change it. A complete change in education to teach Jamaicans that every citizen is responsible for the development of the nation, that every Jamaican has what it takes not to rely on handouts. Jamaica has the potential to punch above its weight with wealth in comparison to its size, population and history if Britain was once the richest most powerful country in the world then why cant little Jamaica be more wealthy in the Americas and be indepent from IMF bailouts?

  7. Willsell birtrightfor50 says:

    This article is very poignant and true. You get a bit alarmed if you are either in the financial sector or understand economics and finances or just plain interested in Jamaica.
    The saddest part about this article is pointing out that where Ja suffers is not for the access to credit however the BAD STEWARDSHIP

  8. It could happen to Jamaica because our present leaders are not doing any thing of any significant to say it wont happen.The two party should be classify as two fail institute and not seem to know what to do next.Many of them around the system for many years and achieve nothing,it so not likely that they will now.If you have people in a system that are not performing and you cant get rid of them the system will go down.This is why it important for us Jamaicans to stand uo for our country.

  9. Willsell birtrightfor50 says:

    This article is very poignant and true. You get a bit alarmed if you are either in the financial sector or understand economics and finances or just plain interested in Jamaica.
    The saddest part about this article is where it pointed out that Ja suffers not for the access to credit however it is due to the BAD STEWARDSHIP that comes with spending the money that was borrowed, that is, if the money was used for the purpose intended, we would have been able to pay it back….and now we have to be literally begging IMF to give us the money which means, in essence, that we will have to do whatever they want us to do because we don’t have a choice!!!!…..seriously people, a when we ago mek dese ppl know that a we put them inna power and we can remove them?! We NEED to take a stand…stop hiding behind ignorance….if yu nuh know, find smaddy else that does…nuh fraid fi ask questions and ask how it will affect yu and yu pickney dem future!!! Enough is enough!! high time these people be held accountable!!

  10. ad.forbes says:

    A lower interest rate from the IMF and other international lending agencies would go a far way to helping Jamaica recover..but as usual foreign “aid” in the form of loans can be a double edged sword.

  11. love.ing says:

    Jamaicans come on why are you so worried about debt. IMF my foot don’t be afraid to ask for help after-all you produce many great people surely they can help. Funny has they ever been A country that was so badly mismanaged.

  12. rankin danny says:

    jamaican goverment should stop and think and consider what resourses.the island has.and use it to pay off the national det.also the devils advocate.do the goverment want to reduce the det or to keep yet the people under slavery bondage still.using economics.

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