Local June 22, 2024 | 10:02 am

Claims put the enormity of public spending in the Dominican Republic up against the wall

Santo Domingo – In spite of the acknowledged positive signs of the current course of the economy, the criteria that the Public Administration devours resources with little sense of limits are accentuated with important leaders of society preferring as immediate measures: to apply cuts on several sides and to set a clear course to extend collections towards high income and patrimonies. Placing these corrective measures on the horizon would pave the way for a fiscal reform.

It would be necessary to break ties with time against time to gain support for the possible tax increase that is beginning to meet resistance at all levels, from the highly profitable taxpayers, such as those of alcoholic beverages already overtaxed, to the middle and lower social classes and consumers in general, historically favorite victims of the intensification of tax collection.

The whip of questioning is focused on the fact that in the last three years the global payroll of the State and its satellites would have grown at a rate of 6.4% with a human mass that would already reach 800 thousand people in 30 state and parastatal institutions. This information was obtained unofficially because official sources make it difficult for any journalist who wants to go deeper into the management of public finances and the tendency, which some consider excessive, to pay people.

With a Social Security Treasury that in just two years (2021-2023) reported the entry into its system of 40,855 new public servants in a country that would break all records in the creation of municipalities and with more provinces than China and even Cuba, in whose territory the Dominican Republic would fit two and a half times. With municipal seats that would have given an intense growth to the Dominican bureaucracy. Among the inventions that expand the payment obligations would be that the function of aldermen went from honorary to highly rewarded and in the placement in the status of “officials in “stand by” to the simple substitutes of important constitutional organisms that receive salaries of category without giving a blow in what they die or send to their houses to the holders.

A timely report by the Regional Center for Economic Strategies, CREES, indicated that after analyzing 18 Latin American countries, the Dominican Republic was among the countries that incurred the most (third) in legislative expenses. A multitude of congressmen is only surpassed in size by two States of colossal geographies and economic dimensions such as Brazil and Mexico. As a local congressional budget item, it is 80% higher than the average expenditure of the Latin American region. The sweetness of the honey of the National Treasury would have exerted an unlimited seduction in these 48 thousand square kilometers.

This same week, a packet of data on the Dominican bureaucracy abroad surfaced, which motivated the newspaper Diario Libre to launch with the headline that “The DR has a disorder of offices abroad of very dubious priority.” The weakness for having well paid “servants” that would have dominated the State all the time became evident with the creation of extensions of local agencies that should not be so emphatically taken to occupy places abroad.

Under the pretext of providing attention to the diaspora, while extending the bureaucracy under political criteria, several public entities have inaugurated unusual “branches” that duplicate the presence of official entities across the seas and in addition to the diplomatic staff itself, which in turn has multiplied. The Dominican Republic pays in New York more consular officials and formal state representation than world powers and Mexico, origin of the largest community of Latin American immigrants in the city of skyscrapers.

A pretentious and costly in taxes Dominican “piece of the State” dwells in more than one place in the United States where there are legations of the autonomous Dominican Social Security and other entities that at taxpayers’ expense promote local causes too available abroad. Intrant, Pro-Consumer and Supérate are included together with a permanent activity of the JCE which barely managed to interest a small number of Creole voters to vote last May 19, which only happens once every four years. The Interior and Police are trying to look like INTERPOL over there, displaying their logos in places where they do not belong, while here the patrols are meager, as the Government itself admits. There was no time to look towards Europe, one of the favorite continents of those favored by power.

In the press media and in the digital sphere, the reactions against the idea of a fiscal reform with the purpose of “guaranteeing the sustainability of the economy” without first undertaking a radical revision of the current level of current expenses and of some non-priority investments, have shone in the press and in the digital sphere. Among the voices against have been representatives of the high academic hierarchy recently quoted by the Listín Diario.

Richard Medina, coordinator of “Social Economic Sciences” at INTEC, claimed that “the Government must look at the problem of the electricity subsidy which already amounts to US$1.5 billion, equivalent to 40% of the fiscal deficit”. In a recent meeting of experts convened by the Listín, it was highlighted as essential to eliminate distortions in the management of public resources and to increase efficiency and equity in the economy.

The notable critic of financial management and former director of tax collection, Magin Diaz, considered it convenient three days ago to remind the Government of one of the recommendations to be taken into account when seeking any fiscal adjustment, which would be: “to achieve more productivity in public management, greater transparency, promotion of equity and development of democratic institutionality”.

Specifically, the president-columnist of the Diario Libre group, Aníbal de Castro, said that: “We all agree that the Government must start with the reorganization of its finances. This implies, among other things, the reduction of the State in order to save but also to improve efficiency. The quality of public spending should be a goal now and always”.

If one prefers to take the chestnuts out of the fire to the Government, one should turn to national measurements of international projection such as those issued in the threshold of the past elections by the risk agency Standart and Poor’s with the affirmation that this country has experienced improvements in the management of the public administration. And what would reflect such positive signs: “Official capacity to maintain high rates of economic growth and, strengthening in the fiscal planning and in the management of the public debt” he said.

“Datosmacro”, a publication that studies economic variables of countries in search of a global vision of finances, said at the time that: the position of the Dominican Republic “progressed positively maintaining a convenient level in the ranking of public spending with respect to its Gross Domestic Product”. He considered the proportions of its budgets dedicated to Education, Health and Defense to be adequate. Remember that the country lives tete a tete with a powder keg called Haiti.

The productive sectors appear to be confident in the progress of the current and future economy according to an index generated by the Central Bank which, with the elections about to hit, would have experienced a positive variation of 09 higher than that of April. More than 90% of businessmen of all levels and areas spoke favorably about the situation of the economy when surveyed.

Recently, the Ministry of Finance informed that technicians from multilateral organizations left the country convinced that the economic policies of the Dominican Republic are in line with international standards. In a public document, the Ministry stated that “the good coordination of the public and private sectors has helped to compensate the deficits generated by the slowdown of the world economy.”

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Platano Frito
June 22, 2024 10:24 am

The corrupt wont change because theyre the ones in control.