A slight majority of 244 respondents to the latest Caymanian Compass online poll think the economy will improve in 2006, but one-third of the respondents think it will get worse.
Asked what they thought would happen to the economy in the Cayman Islands in 2006, 66 people (27 per cent) said it would get much better, while 61 people (25 per cent) said they thought it would get slightly better.
On the other side, 49 respondents (20.1 per cent) thought the economy would get much worse, while 32 people (13.1 per cent) thought it would get slightly worse.
In addition, 29 people (11.9 per cent) thought the economy would stay the same, while seven respondents (2.9 per cent) said they did not know what would happen with the economy.
Several respondents -some optimistic, some pessimistic – commented on the cost of living.
‘I think (the economy) will get somewhat better, but not enough to offset the rise in the cost of living,’ said one respondent.
‘Unless positive action is taken to moderate living costs, the economy faces serious problems,’ said someone else, who thought the economy would get much worse.
‘Employers cannot keep pace with pay rises commensurate with the cost of living,’ said yet another pessimistic respondent.
Other respondents who thought the economy would worsen commented on a lessening population.
‘As more and more ex-pats leave, the economy will start to suffer,’ said one person.
‘Less expatriates to help build the economy,’ said another.
Strangely, no one who thought the economy would get much better offered any comment as to why. However, some of the respondents who thought the economy would get slightly better, did so with a caveat of increasing tourism.
Another person remarked there was still a lot of Ivan rebuilding to do.