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JIS News

A US$500 million concessionary loan has been committed by China, over the next three years, to facilitate Chinese investments in the Caribbean.
China’s Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Chen Jinghua made the disclosure during a courtesy call on Minister of Water and Housing, Dr. Horace Chang at the Ministry on Wednesday (Sept. 19), said that, “China will also provide technical training for more than 2,000 Jamaicans in the coming year.”
“This is a big jump from previous commitments by China to the Caribbean and Jamaica and shows that China is more willing and ready to participate in the economic development in this part of the world,” Ambassador Jinghua told Dr. Chang, adding that, “we believe there is a lot more we can do”.
The Minister lauded China for its role in Jamaica’s economic development, citing the country’s contribution to the expansion of the Port of Kingston and other significant areas of support. He said that, “port development is critical to the expansion of the whole economy”, adding, “China has for a long time played an active role in Jamaica’s development, so we must ensure as a country that we have strong relations with China, as this will be mutually beneficial in the long-term and we look forward to expanding fruitful relations between our countries.”
Ambassador Jinghua praised Jamaica for being among those countries that have supported the “one China” policy. He was referring to Jamaica’s stance on mainland China’s conflict with Taiwan, which is resisting re-unification.
Dr. Basil Fernandez, head of the Water Resources Authority, who was present at the meeting, expressed pleasure with China’s provision of training for Jamaicans.
Noting that “training is a very important area”, he informed that two Jamaicans were recently trained in rainwater harvesting in China and “more of this is needed, so the offer of training for 2,000 Jamaicans” is welcome.
Permanent Secretary in the Water and Housing Ministry, Genefa Hibbert, who also participated in the discussions, commented that, “on a visit to China two years ago, I was taken on a tour of low cost housing projects and was quite impressed, so preliminary discussions were held in Jamaica sometime later with a visiting delegation from China about adopting their low income housing technology.”
In his response, Ambassador Jinghua said that, “water and housing are common challenges for Jamaica and China”, adding that, “land is scarce and the price is high for poor, low income people, who cannot afford houses on the market, so it is up to the Government to provide low cost housing”.