JIS News

Cabinet has given approval for the proceeds of the lease of the Hounslow packing house in St. Elizabeth to be used to repay a bank loan that had been taken out to improve the facility.
This was disclosed at the Post Cabinet Press Briefing on Wednesday (October 6) at Jamaica House, by Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunications and Special Projects, Hon Daryl Vaz.
The loan of $16 million was taken out by the Agro Investment Corporation (AIC) with the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), to create additional capacity at the packing house. The 3,000 square foot facility was constructed under the Improving Jamaica’s Agricultural Productivity Project (IJAP), with $30 million in funding provided by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
Mr. Vaz explained that the loan had become necessary because of budgetary constraints to finance the construction of additional capacity. The loan was obtained at an interest rate of 10 per cent per annum over a 10-year period.
The Information Minister pointed out that a key component of the development will be the incorporation of greenhouse technology, adding that some 40 greenhouses will be constructed in two clusters to supply hotels and restaurants with vegetables.
“Packing houses are also being constructed in the two clusters to absorb output from these greenhouses, and open field farms in order to ensure a consistent supply of vegetables to hotels and restaurants, which are safe and of a high standard and quality,” Mr. Vaz said.

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