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House: sinking fund payments suspended

Finance minister Curtis Dickinson (File photograph)

The House of Assembly on Friday passed a Bill to suspend mandatory annual payments into the sinking fund, a reserve for money set aside to pay down long-term debt.

Curtis Dickinson, the Minister of Finance, called the fund, which was established in 1993, “a concept rooted in history”.

Mr Dickinson told MPs that as minister with capital markets expertise, he was taking a new approach to tackling the island’s national debt.

Opposition MPs queried the Government’s stance on fiscal prudence during the debate, which saw the Government Loans Amendment Bill 2019 ultimately approved.

The legislation was a prominent feature in Mr Dickinson’s first Budget Statement in February.