JIS News

Prime Minister, the Hon. Bruce Golding has given the country’s commitment to honour its obligations to contribute to the Caribbean Development Fund (CDF).
Capitalisation of the CDF has become an issue, as most members of CARICOM are yet to meet their latest round of obligations to the Fund.
The matter was again addressed at the final press conference associated with the 31st Regular meeting of the Conference of Heads of the Caribbean Community, held at the Rose Hall Resort and Spa, in Montego Bay, on July 7.
Mr. Golding, who is also Chairman of CARICOM, said that while there is enough money in the Fund to carry out projects already approved, the level of contribution by countries is below acceptable levels. The Prime Minister urged understanding for countries unable to make their contribution, because of the economic crunch.
He said Jamaica has already paid over about $11 million to the Fund, and the country is under severe strain.
“Every quarter we have to meet a primary target, the most important one of which is our fiscal balance. And, therefore, what my Minister of Finance is saying now is, ‘look we know we need to pay the money, but right now there is need to pass some test, so since they don’t need the money to disburse right now, there’s no use in us failing the IMF test to say we have some money in the bank sitting down’,” he said, explaining Jamaica’s delay in making its full contribution.
The CDF was established under Article 158 of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas to provide financial or technical assistance to disadvantaged countries, regions and sectors. It is the centrepiece of a regime to address the disparities among the Member States of the Community, which may result from the implementation of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME).