We will weather the storm
Thursday 29th January 2009, 3:00PM GMT.
JERSEY has a ‘sound and stable economy’ and can face international scrutiny of its finance industry with confidence, the Island’s new Chief Minister told business leaders yesterday.
In his first major public speech as Chief Minister, Senator Terry Le Sueur outlined major challenges ahead as Jersey follows the UK into recession but remained upbeat about the Island’s longer-term prospects.
The Chief Minister told the Chamber of Commerce that he would spend the next few weeks working on his first Strategic Plan and wanted to hear from them and other Islanders about priorities for shaping Jersey’s future after the recession. Meanwhile, the States would offer emergency help to stimulate the economy with ‘timely, targeted and temporary’ use of its £140 million Stabilisation Fund.
Senator Le Sueur, a former accountant who took over the top job in Island politics last month after six years as Treasury Minister, told a packed house that Jersey was well-placed to weather the economic storm and that the finance industry at the heart of the Island economy was among the most responsible in the world.
Despite the daily bad news on the economic front, there was no need to be despondent, said Senator le Sueur.
‘We cannot be immune from the collapse of some UK high-street retailers, however successful their Jersey operations may be,’ he said. ‘This is really a problem that affects the whole community. All of us, in fact, are at the sharp end of this. My task, and that of my fellow States Members, is to deal with the results of the changing economic climate.’
• Picture: The Chief Minister addresses the Jersey Chamber of Commerce lunch. Picture by Rob Currie (00614633)