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BUDGET: £100m to help achieve government's population plan

Five year Economic Strategy Fund to be launched

£100 million will be spent attempting to realise government’s plan of increasing the population.

A five-year financial plan has been set out in Tynwald this morning as part of the Budget – the treasury minister says it will be a ‘foundation’ on which to build a more sustainable economy.

The Economic Strategy aims to achieve a population of 100,000 by 2037 – the £100 million investment will be allocated to an Economic Strategy Fund which will be set up this year.

Alex Allinson said: "The economic strategy has ambitions to further develop the infrastructure and services of our community to plan for an estimated population of 100,000 by 2037 and to generate over £200m of additional annual income to reinvest in services and our quality of life by 2032.

"In order to do this we must ensure our finances are strong and are able to support the strategy to invest in our people, our businesses and our Island’s future.”

The five-year plan relies on transfers from general reserves to bridge the gap between income and expenditure – government is expecting to spend £1.2 billion over the next 12 months.

Dr Allinson continued: "To fully fund this investment we will, once again, need to draw down heavily on reserves to bridge the gap between income and expenditure.

"The Budget shows an initial annual structural deficit of £152 million which will gradually reduce over the following four years.

"Our significant reserves have been established by previous generations and the work and effort that went into building this should never be underestimated.

"It is essential that we develop our economy and increase Government revenue so that we can start to replenish these reserves for the benefit of the generations to come."

You can find out more about this year’s Budget – and the Economic Strategy Fund – by clicking HERE.

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