Opposition Spokesman on Finance, Julian Robinson, says the government’s proposed budget for the next fiscal year is not adequate to address the problems arising from COVID-19.

He raised the concern during today’s sitting of Parliament’s Standing Finance Committee, to consider the estimates of expenditure for Fiscal Year 2021/2022.

However, Finance Minister Dr. Nigel Clarke tried to allay many of the concerns.

Chevon Campbell reports.

Mr. Robinson acknowledge the very trying nature of the still ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic.

However, the Finance Spokesman says the proposed 830-billion dollar budget is not adequate to bring Jamaica back to growth.

Mr. Robinson says not enough is being allocated to protect  the most vulnerable, nor adequate expenditure to bridge the education gap.

He’s also concerned the government’s revenue projections are not in line with the reality on the ground.

However, Finance Minister Dr. Nigel Clarke while understanding the uncertainties associated with COVID-19 he still believes the projections as it relates to growth in the economy are achievable.

He says once the most vulnerable in the population are covered through the vaccination programme continued stringent COVID-19 mitigation measures will be unlikely.

Dr. Clarke also says Jamaica could benefit from other upside potentials which are materializing such as vaccinations in Jamaica’s major trading partners and tourist markets such as the United Kingdom and the United States.