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Chief Minister thanks ‘resilient’ private sector 26 January 2011

Chief Minister Tony Brown MHKCHIEF Minister Tony Brown MHK has personally thanked the business community for continuing to drive the Island’s economy forward during a period of global financial turbulence.

Delivering his annual ‘State of the Nation’ address to the Alliance of Isle of Man Compliance Professionals at the Mount Murray Hotel, Mr Brown said the Manx economy was holding up well despite tough trading conditions in UK and overseas markets. There was further evidence of this in the recent news that unemployment had actually fallen during 2010, ending the year at a rate of 1.9%.

The Chief Minister went on:

‘The economic performance of the Isle of Man is a tribute to the diversity, resilience and enterprise of our business community. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all, because without the support of our business community, their confidence, commitment, and contribution to our Island’s wellbeing, we could not do all that we do, and the Island would not have the standard of living and quality of life that it currently enjoys.’

His speech included a review of the measures that Government has already initiated as part of its five-year strategy to rebalance its finances following the revision of the Island’s VAT sharing arrangements with the UK. Next month’s Manx Budget would deliver the second instalment of the strategy, he said.

Looking ahead, Mr Brown stressed the importance of international engagement to pave the way for the economic future, and assured the audience that his Government would keep working hard for the best interests of the Isle of Man. Within the Island, he observed, the values that underpin the Isle of Man’s Freedom to Flourish strategy – resourcefulness, resilience, innovation – were ‘clearly alive and well amongst our businesses, and long may they remain so.’

Summing up, the Chief Minister declared:

‘With a robust and diverse economic base, a sound infrastructure and sound international reputation as well as a strong sense of community teamwork, the Isle of Man is well placed to overcome current challenges and to move forward into a confident and secure future. No-one is pretending that the journey ahead for the Island will be an easy one. It will demand commitment and a focus on national priorities and decisions that are responsible and realistic rather than easy and popular. When you consider everything that has been thrown at us in the last 12 to 18 months, the Manx Nation continues to be in a sound condition: we have good reserves, no external borrowings and government is optimistic about our future’.

To read the Chief Minister's speech in full, please click here

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