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Govt committed to transparency on £300m spending, Picardo says

The Gibraltar Government last night reaffirmed its commitment to explaining how it plans to spend the £300m raised by the deal on Gibraltar’s public estates.

But in a statement No.6 Convent Place said the timing of these announcements will “necessarily and sensibly” be dictated by reference to the manner in which these projects develop and come to fruition.

This follows repeated calls from the GSD for the Chief Minister Fabian Picardo to answer questions about how his government planned to spend the money.

But, in hitting back yesterday, Mr Picardo said he is already committed to doing just that.

Mr Picardo said: “I have already announced the use of 10% of that money. More announcements will follow.”

“And there is no need for Mr Clinton to go back on his admissions on Viewpoint that these transactions were ‘a good thing’.”

“What Mr Clinton clearly has a problem with is our commitment to the publication of all the Government company accounts,” he said adding: “The GSD did not publish them.”

“We are in the process of doing so, as and when they are ready.”

“I regret the GSD’s continued attempts at undermining the efforts of this Government, whether or not such attempts actually undermine the good of the community at large.”

Mr Picardo added that it is “further regrettable” that the GSD appears to believe that the Opposition’s role is merely to “criticise and offer no vision of its own”.

“The GSD seems to continue to labour under the misapprehension that what the electorate wants is a bickering opposition that opposes for the sake of opposing,” he said.

“Instead, my Government continues to work studiously and diligently to deliver the best outcomes for the people of this community, as we navigate the uncertainty of Brexit in the best way possible, as Opposition members themselves acknowledge we are doing.”

“As a result, engaging with Mr Clinton any further on this issue is an unnecessary and unfortunate distraction, borne of the amateur style of politics in which Mr Clinton is engaged.”

“Instead, I remain committed to continuing to approach the business of running this community in a professional manner, as it is the Government’s duty to do.”

New challenges and new opportunities await as the Rock transitions to Post-Brexit Gibraltar, a sustainable and prosperous community outside the European Union, Mr Picardo said.

“I am confident that Gibraltar is well prepared to leverage these opportunities and that the health of our public finances is the foundation upon which we will write the next chapter of success in the story of our homeland for future generations.”

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