Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Audley Shaw, has said that as a result of the Government’s commitment to good governance, Jamaica has been receiving unprecedented support from international development partners (IDPs).
Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Hon Audley Shaw
He named the IDPs as: the International Monetary Fund (IMF); the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB); the World Bank; the European Union; and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
Speaking at the Commonwealth Secretariat’s first Global Small States Conference at Marlborough House in London, Mr. Shaw said that the commitment of US$2.4 billion of financial support (representing 20% of GDP) from the IDPs, at low interest rates over the next two years, would further bolster existing confidence in the economy.
He stated that this unprecedented financial support had already resulted in a sharp improvement in the country’s macro-economic framework.
Mr. Shaw told the conference that in exchange for this level of support from the IDPs, the Government, under Prime Minister the Hon. Bruce Golding’s leadership, had begun an ambitious programme of game changing initiatives, including: the Jamaica Debt Exchange (JDX), privatisation, tax reform, public sector reforms and the promulgation of a fiscal responsibility framework to ensure transparency and accountability in governance. He said that the foundation was now being laid for lower interest rates and continuing stability in the exchange rate, and controlled Government spending, within the deficit targets, in order to make the economy more competitive and allow the private sector to assert its role in investing on a larger scale.
He noted that, in addition to several major private sector investments already started or about to start, the Government had embarked on a major investment in public infrastructure, including the construction of a new cruise ship pier in Falmouth, in partnership with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. In conjunction with the Ex-Im Bank of China, a four-year programme of road construction would also commence, with planned expenditure of US$460 million.