Leader of the Opposition Arden McLean, in his New Year message, said he and his colleagues reject what he described as the government’s belief in “trickle-down economics”.
In his video message, McLean said that, over the last 10 years, the Cayman Islands population had increased from 56,000 to 66,000 and GDP had grown from $3.6 billion to $4.6 billion, but stated that the economic growth was badly managed and fuelled largely by inflation.
He said the resources and capabilities of Caymanian people remained untapped “as a result of both the PPM’s and CDP’s strong belief in trickle-down economics, whereby Cayman’s future success is dependent on rich investors coming to our rescue after receiving very large government concessions”.
He added that he believed that Cayman would achieve greater success by expanding opportunities for Cayman’s working men and women.
McLean stated that loans to private commercial companies had fallen from $775 million at the end of 2007 to $679 million by the end of 2018, but loans to households had increased from just under $1.3 billion in 2007 to almost $2.2 billion at the end of 2018.
“Simply put, we are becoming a population of debtors, and it is important to look at ways to reduce the cost of borrowing and increase the disposable income of our people.”
He also addressed Cayman’s traffic congestion problem, saying it had caused a major loss of productivity in Cayman’s service base, and also criticised the government’s handling of delays in the collection of garbage on the islands, stating, “Collection has reduced from twice a week to once per week to you guess per week.”