Mann: Growth Up! But the Chamber of Commerce Won’t Shut Up

NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE

‘the Chamber of Commerce should be told to shut up and stop carrying on as if the Island is some fiscal fiefdom for the benefit of their members!’

It’s a wonder Allan Bell the Manx Chief Minister wasn’t singing Rodgers and Hammerstein’s ‘Oh what a beautiful morning’, from the musical Oklahoma, as he revealed news of the Isle of Man’s ongoing economic success.

The 31st year apparently of successive growth that’s a record few if any large or small global economies can equal. The rare statistics can be found here they seem indisputable:

https://www.gov.im/media/1348805/national-income-2013-14-report.pdf

However the Chief Minister was careful to qualify the good news message just as the Treasury Minister did as well this week over positive news from credit ratings agency Moody’s.

Because for all the upbeat talk about the economy the average householder doesn’t have a ‘feel good factor’ as both a decline in incomes in real terms and also increased stealth charges continue to bite.

The report does confirm also what the ‘word on the street’ has been, saying i.e. retail trade is in decline, possibly hit by a combination of lower incomes and internet shopping and the tourist trade is down. The latter seems strange because a real fillip for tourism is the kick-start of Motor Cycle TT week and the end of season (almost) Manx Grand Prix both events were talked up this year. The Economic Development Minister virtually eulogised the success of both events and the Islands main shipping carrier sang hymns about record numbers of bookings. Something doesn’t square.

The most salient thing however about the ’31 successive years of growth message’ is why the government currently appears to be wanting to dance to the Chamber of Commerce’s (CoC) tune about expanding the population.

The CoCs mantra is that we must expand the workforce by about 1000 a year this is apparently an imperative for growth in the world of greed that they inhabit.

Surely if the Islands growth has continued (GDP up from 3.2% to 4.5 GNP up from 4.8 to 5.1%) why should government or anyone else for that matter heed the Chambers siren calls?

The Chief Minister and his COMIN colleagues really cannot have it both ways if the economy is doing so well (and the stats indicate it is) the Chamber of Commerce should be told to shut up and stop carrying on as if the Isle of Man is some fiscal fiefdom for the benefit of their members!

BERNARD MOFFATT

Issued by: The Celtic News

09/09/15

THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE

The Celtic League established in 1961 has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It promotes cooperation between the countries and campaigns on a range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, military activity and socio-economic issues

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