Puerto Rico’s governor submitted a revised fiscal plan overnight Thursday that estimates the U.S. Caribbean territory’s economy will shrink by 11 percent and its population drop by nearly 8 percent next year. The island is continuing to recover from the crippling impact of Hurricane Maria. The proposal doesn’t set aside any money to pay creditors in the next five years as the island struggles to restructure a portion of its $73 billion public debt. The original plan had set aside $800 million a year for creditors, a fraction of the roughly $35 billion due in interest and payments over the next decade.
The five-year plan also assumes Puerto Rico will receive at least $35 billion in emergency federal funds for post-hurricane recovery and another $22 billion from private insurance companies. Some analysts view that assumption as risky given that the U.S. Treasury Department and U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency recently told Puerto Rico officials that they are temporarily withholding billions of dollars approved by Congress last year for post-hurricane recovery because they felt the island currently had sufficient funds. READ MORE