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?Rice, gold return stellar performancesDuring his review of the performance of 2011, Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh reported on a positive note, saying that Guyana?s export earnings topped the US$1B mark with rice and gold returning stellar performances.Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh as he made his way to the Chambers on Friday last to present the 2012 BudgetDr. Singh reported to the House during this year?s budget presentation that in 2012 there was an 11.3 increase in rice production.He told the House that the rice industry extended its stellar performance of recent years with total production in 2011 of 401,jerseys cheap nfl,904 tonnes.According to Dr. Singh, during last year, the industry continued to expand acreage under cultivation and earned higher yields,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, reflecting increased training to farmers, returns from the introduction of higher yielding varieties of rice and supported by Government?s investment in drainage and irrigation.?Investment and production in the sector were also bolstered by the benefit of stronger external market prices.?He said that ?The other agriculture subsectors grew by 5.7 percent, reflecting returns on the Grow More campaign and the Agricultural Diversification Programme, coupled with more integrated market access, especially with the bridging of the Berbice River.?The Minister also reported positive news for the livestock sector,Wholesale Nike NFL Jerseys, which he said expanded by 5.8 per cent and is mainly attributed to higher production of eggs, poultry meat and mutton.?On the other hand,Cheap NHL Jerseys, the fishing industry contracted by 5.3 per cent, reflecting a reduction in the number of operating vessels and fishing trips associated with the increased cost of fuel and the risk of piracy and also the continued depletion of fishing grounds.?Additionally,Cheap NFL Authentic Jerseys, the Forestry Sector contracted by 9.3 per cent.The finance minister reported that the mining and quarrying sector recorded growth of 19.2 percent in 2011. ?Underlying this was a 17.7 percent increase in raw gold declarations to 363,083 ounces, the highest level since 2004 when Omai Gold mines was still in operation, as favourable world market prices persisted in 2011 and induced significant continued investment in the sector.?As it relates to the projections for 2012, Dr Singh reported that the rice industry is now projected to expand further to 412,425 tonnes, a 2.6 per cent increase in value added to the industry.?This record output target places the industry in a favourable position to exploit new and emerging markets. The industry continues to reap the benefits of investments made in research and extension services and is aided by improvements in drainage and irrigation infrastructure.?He said too that the livestock industry is expected to grow by a further 4.9 per cent, while the other agriculture sector is also projected to expand by four per cent.The Finance Minister said that the continued expansion in these two sub-sectors, positions Guyana to take advantage of regional market opportunities while ensuring domestic food security.The Forestry Sector is projected to decline by 8.2 percent,Carmelo Anthony Jersey, reflecting the implementation of programmes to improve stakeholder capacity in areas of forest policy and sustainable forestry management.The Finance Minister said too that at the end of 2011, the balance of payments reflected a deficit of US$15M.?This is primarily attributed to developments on the current account due to a higher import bill driven by rising fuel prices and higher levels of imports of capital goods concentrated mainly in the industrial, agricultural and mining sectors?This outweighed the collective increases in export earnings associated with higher world market prices for key commodities and net current transfers.?The Minister reported too that export earnings in 2011 expanded by 27.6 per cent to US$1.1B ?primarily attributed to increase in volumes exported as well as favourable world market prices for most of the key export commodities.?Export earnings on sugar, Dr. Singh reported, increased by 21.6 per cent to US$123.4M due to a 16.8 per cent increase in average export price, coupled with a four per cent increase in export volume to 211,762 tonnes.He said that rice export earnings also expanded by 14.5 per cent to US$173.2M, mainly due to a 26.1 per cent increase in average export price to US$567 per ton, while export volume contracted to 305,382 tonnes due to a decline in stock levels at the beginning of the year.Total gold exports is valued US$517.1M,Wholesale China Jerseys, a 49.3 per cent increase over 2010.The Finance Minister reported also that the capital account recorded a surplus of US$373.2M compared to US$339.2M as a result of higher foreign direct investment concentrated mainly in the mining, and telecommunication sectors.?Reflecting these developments, the Bank of Guyana ended the year with total external reserves of US$798.1M, equivalent to 4.2 months of imports.?
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