JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Government today (April 15) signed two financing agreements with the European Union (EU), under the 11th European Development Fund, valued at J$2.8 billion (€20.20 million).
  • This will support the Public Finance Management Reform Programme at a cost of €3.65 million (J$509.1 million), with first disbursement of J$132.5 million, and address environmental and climate change challenges through improved forest management in Jamaica at a cost of €16.55 million (J$2.3 billion), with first disbursement of $279 million.
  • The agreements were signed by Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith and Commissioner in charge of International Cooperation and Development in the European Commission, Neven Mimica, during a ceremony held at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston.

The Government today (April 15) signed two financing agreements with the European Union (EU), under the 11th European Development Fund, valued at J$2.8 billion (€20.20 million).

This will support the Public Finance Management Reform Programme at a cost of €3.65 million (J$509.1 million), with first disbursement of J$132.5 million, and address environmental and climate change challenges through improved forest management in Jamaica at a cost of €16.55 million (J$2.3 billion), with first disbursement of $279 million.

The agreements were signed by Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith and Commissioner in charge of International Cooperation and Development in the European Commission, Neven Mimica, during a ceremony held at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith (left); and Commissioner in charge of International Cooperation and Development in the European Commission, Neven Mimica, sign two financing agreements under the 11th European Development Fund valued at $2.8 billion (€20.20 million), during a ceremony held at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston, on April 15.

In her remarks, Senator Johnson Smith noted that for more than 40 years the EU has been a steady partner on Jamaica’s path to development.

She noted that the EU represents the largest provider of grant resources to Jamaica though its cooperation programme, in support of Jamaica’s national development plan, Vision 2030.

“Over the years, the EU has provided in excess of €1 billion in financial and technical assistance to Jamaica. This consistent support has positively impacted the lives of Jamaicans in so many ways.

The reach and breadth of the EU assistance over the years has been significant,” she said.

Senator Johnson Smith noted that the assistance includes wide-ranging poverty-reduction projects; road and other infrastructural improvements; interventions in agriculture, health, education, national security and justice, water, sanitation; programmes to advance rural development; as well as macroeconomic policy advice and budget support.

“Budget support has been a mutually preferred mode of financing for this programme. The Government recognises that budget support provides greater country ownership, reduced transaction costs, scaling up of poverty reduction and potentially greater development effectiveness,” she said.

The Minister said the signing reflects the diversity and scope of the EU programme and its continued alignment with the strategic priority of the Government of Jamaica.

“We are a small island developing state which is highly vulnerable to climate change. The improved forestry management for Jamaica budget support programme in the amount of €16.55 million, is intended to build the country’s climate resilience by promoting sustainable forest management,” Senator Johnson Smith said.

She added that the programme will also be seeking to better utilise forest resources for economic and social purposes.

Regarding the Public Finance Management Reform Programme, Senator Johnson Smith said this has been an important element of Jamaica’s macroeconomic stabilisation programme.

She said the programme is designed to improve public governance, transparency, accountability and delivery of public service by strengthening financial management systems and civil society partnership in good governance and the public financial management sector.

For his part, Mr. Mimica noted that the Public Finance Management Reform Programme is assisting the Government in building the necessary structures of a modern integrated financial management system, which will further improve public governance, transparency, accountability and delivery of public service.

“Under the forestry programme we want to support the government’s vision of maximising natural resources, including biodiversity, and to adapt to environmental and socioeconomic changes with a special attention to low emission and climate resilient economies,” he said.