Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 22nd 2018 Contents regional BG15
Thursday, February 22, 2018
The Eastern Caribbean Currency Union
(ECCU) recorded “slow growth” of just
over two per cent last year, due to the
passage of the two hurricanes, Dominica’s
Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has said.
Skerrit, who chaired the 90th meeting of
the Monetary Council of the Eastern Carib-
bean Central Bank (ECCB) on Friday, said
that with regards to growth and compet-
itiveness, the Council, comprising mainly
finance ministers from the sub-regional
organisation of Eastern Caribbean States
(OECS), was informed the currency union
would have grown at a slower rate of 2.3
per cent in 2017 as a result of the passage
of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
The two category 5 storms caused wide-
spread damage when they passed through
the Lesser Antilles in September last year,
with Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda being
Skerrit said in addition, the fiscal sur-
plus for the ECCU was estimated to have
narrowed last year “partly attributed to a
surge in expenditure following the impact
of the hurricanes.
“For 2018, growth is projected at 2.2
per cent still well below the five per cent
target. However projections pointed to an
acceleration in 2019,” Skerrit said.
He said that the Council noted that the
capital adequacy of banks in the ECCU has
improved and observed that the average
non-performing loans ratio which fell in
2015 and 2016 “is trending upward as a
consequence of recent hurricanes.
Skerrit said that negotiations with the
indigenous banks and other stakeholders
had been ongoing for years and “what the
ECCB has done on the request of the Mon-
etary Council is to prepare a statement on
intent and principles that will guide the
discussions with the stakeholders in that
The ECCB serves as a Central bank for
the islands of Antigua and Barbuda, Domi-
nica, Grenada, St Lucia, St Vincent and the
Grenadines, St Kitts-Nevis, Montserrat and
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
has launched the 2018 call for proposals for the
Regional Public Goods (RPG) Initiative in Latin
America and the Caribbean (LAC), which supports
projects involving three or more countries.
The Washington-based financial institution said
the RPG initiative provides technical grants to fi-
nance solutions that resolve shared challenges
through regional cooperation.
Since 2004, the RPG initiative has financed 154
projects, investing more than US$112 million.
The IDB said the proposals must involve a col-
lective solution produced by at least three IDB bor-
rowing member countries.
The IDB said past RPG-funded projects have in-
cluded a protocol for joint procurement and qual-
ity of medicines in Central America, an action plan
for the energy efficiency in the Caribbean hotels,
support to the interoperability of foreign trade sin-
gle windows, a framework for protection and reg-
istration of migrant workers in the Southern Cone
and regional standards for school infrastructure
across Latin America and the Caribbean, among
All proposals must be presented in accordance
with the general guidelines and must be submitted
online on April 16, 2018.
IDB calls for proposals
for projects in the region
ECCB projects economic growth of
over two per cent for OECS countries
Regional hotel association
elects new president
Caribbean tourism industry professional Stacy
Cox has been elected president of the Caribbean
Society of Hotel Association Executives (CSHAE) for
the next two years.
Cox, received a full two-year mandate at the asso-
ciation’s annual general meeting, which preceded
this month’s 36th annual Caribbean Hotel and Tour-
ism Association (CHTA) Caribbean Travel Market-
place event held here.
According to Cox, her mandate includes increased
engagement on issues such as education and train-
ing, advocacy, airlift capacity, disaster management
and the sharing economy.
The association’s 2018-20 executive board will be
chaired by Gilda Gumbs Samuel, executive direc-
tor of the Anguilla Hotel and Tourism Association,
while Brian Frontin, CEO of the Trinidad Hotels,
Restaurant & Tourism Association, will serve as vice
president. Miles Mercera, president and CEO of the
Curaçao Hospitality & Tourism Association, will
serve as treasurer, and Clarisa Jimenez, president
and CEO of the Puerto Rico Hotel & Tourism Associ-
ation, has been appointed secretary. CMC
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