Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips has charged Jamaica’s scholars to help the government find solutions to reduce the country’s debt.
He was addressing scholars and experts attending a conference hosted by the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies yesterday.
Jamaica’s high debt has been blamed for the years of minimal economic growth and debt repayment accounts for most of the government’s budget each year.
Phillips said the input of those in academia is critical as the administration goes through this difficult economic period.
The government has reiterated that it will be pursing reforms to help strengthen the economy.
Tax and public sector pension reforms and a reduction of the debt to GDP ratio have been identified as critical areas which need to be addressed, especially as the government seeks to secure a new deal with the International Monetary Fund.
The five-day conference, which is being held under the theme, Critical Reflection in a Time of Uncertainty, will explore the 50 years of Independence and the possible alternatives for the next 50 years.