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Macroeconomic Factors

In: Business and Management

Submitted By brina
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Macroeconomic factors are large scale events or trends which affect the economy (for example recession and unemployment). Macroeconomic factors affect many things and are therefore closely monitored by governments, businesses and investors. Jamaica's economy faces many challenges to growth: high crime and corruption, large-scale unemployment and underemployment, and a debt-to-GDP ratio of about 140%.
Government Fiscal Policy
Gross Domestic Product - GDP
The Jamaican economy is heavily dependent on services, which accounts for nearly 80% of GDP. The country continues to derive most of its foreign exchange from tourism, remittances, and bauxite/alumina. Remittances and tourism each account for 30% of GDP, while bauxite/alumina exports make up roughly 5% of GDP. The bauxite/alumina sector was most affected by the global downturn while the tourism industry and remittance flow remained resilient.
Debt Management
The attendant debt servicing cost consumes a large portion of the government's budget, limiting its ability to fund the critical infrastructure and social programs required to drive growth. Jamaica's economic growth rate in the recent past has been stagnant, averaging less than 1% per year for over 20 years. Jamaica's onerous public debt burden is largely the result of government bailouts to ailing sectors of the economy, most notably to the financial sector. In early 2010, the Jamaican Government initiated the Jamaica Debt Exchange to retire high-priced domestic bonds and reduce annual debt servicing. Despite these efforts, debt continued to be a serious concern, forcing the government to negotiate and sign a new IMF agreement in May 2013 to gain access to approximately $1 billion additional funds. As a precursor, the government instigated a second National Debt Exchange in 2012.
Taxes
The IMF deal requires the government to reform its tax system,…...

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