Opposition Leader Bernard Grech described the Budget as put forward by the Government for 2021 as a budget which did not take into account the future.
Writing on Facebook, Grech said while one would say that the measures announced are fitting for such unprecedented times, the government failed to consider the future. He maintained that government did not address the current issues and those issues which the country is expected to face in the immediate future.
Grech said that while some of the proposals were good, some have been recycled.
“The government is afraid of facing reality. That related to the health and tourism sector. For Robert Abela, it’s business as usual,” Grech wrote, commenting that the uncertainty created by Abela’s mismanagement was being swept under the carpet.
L-ewwel reazzjoni għall-Baġit 2021. Dan ma kienx baġit normali, u żgur li mhux baġit li kuntenti narawh ikun PR exercise…
Posted by Bernard Grech on Monday, October 19, 2020
The Opposition delivered a press conference after Finance Minister Edward Scicluna delivered his budget speech on Monday evening in Parliament.
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'This is a government that works by PR. When the mask falls off, the government is a recycled one,' Grech replies.
Grech reiterates that the budget is for the short term and that it would be seen if it is translated into reality.
On migration, Grech says that he was clear when he invited the government to hold a national conference. He notes that only one page is dedicated to migration and that no mention is made of foreign workers.
Grech says that we need a concrete plan for green economy. The Opposition leader notes that at the same time of the budget speech, trees were being uprooting in Attard.
Opposition Leader clarifies that this is the initial reaction. He explains that the budget will be analysed in depth. Grech says that he did not say that there are no social measures. He dubs it as an "election budget" and that it is one which relates to the near future.
Another question. He asks what is the PN's plan?
"We can't say that there are any new ideas."
Grech says that the measures were already around, and that the government has recycled. He says that the Opposition welcomes "good" measures.
The next question relates to social measures proposed by the government.
Measures aimed at SMEs and investors, as well as professionals providing for various services.
Grech says that this was clearly listed in their pre-budget document. The document contains short term, medium term and long term proposals.
What budgets what you were expecting for the long term?
The Opposition leader says that Malta needs hope which only the Opposition can deliver on.
"This is an incompetent government which failed," Grech says.
Echoing the Chamber of Commerce and MUT, Grech endorses their statements.
On tourism, Grech notes that Malta has been placed on high-risk.
On the outbreak of coronavirus in care homes, Dr Grech says that the government had to publish details on what went wrong and what action will be taken.
The government had to ensure businesses that the Christmas period will not be lost, he failed to do so, Grech says.
"The government forgot frontliners and teachers," Grech remarks.
He remarks that there is no decrease on utility bills or fuel.
He says that the government should have presented concrete proposals on how to flatten the curve.
In the upcoming months, Partit Nazzjonalista will present "concrete plans".
"We want an economy that serves the people," Grech says.
Among the PN's proposals which were taken up are; ecommerce, start ups, etc.
Referring to the document, he says that the government still needs to draft its economic vision for the upcoming ten years.
Grech says it shows government fatigue.
"He's more worried about the upcoming election rather than addressing the issues ahead," he says.
Abela's government presented proposals which do not address long-term issues.
The government lacks ideas and innovation, he says.
He describes the government as not having a long-term plan which takes into account the unprecedented times we're in.
Opposition Leader Bernard Grech starts delivering his speech.
Grech told the party's media that the budget only takes into account the present and it is aimed at serving Abela's "personal interests" ahead of the upcoming general election. He notes that the budget is either made up of recycled ideas or proposals put forward by the Opposition in their pre-budget document.
Grech who was recently in the foyer of the House of Representatives, just gave a comment to the PN's media.
You may follow the Government's press conference live through this link: https://newsbook.com.mt/en/live-pm-abela-addressing-a-press-conference/
The Opposition will deliver a press conference after the Government's press conference happening outside Castille.
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