“if the Executive could reach agreement..”

Responding to the SDLP’s proposals, in the Belfast Telegraph economist John Simpson restates his alternative artistic vision of the economy and, in particular, the NI Executive’s three-year budget spending plan.

To maintain that the 2009-10 Budget should not be restated is, effectively, a deception since, whether by default, it has changed. The surprise is that the First Minister, deputy First Minister and Minister of Finance have tried to sustain unrealistic assumptions. A restatement of the financial allocations, current and capital, alongside a clear statement of the revenue expected that will balance the books is needed. The SDLP has demonstrated that significant budget variations would be possible, if the Executive could reach agreement.