Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 1st 2013 Contents AUGUST 2013 • WEEK ONE www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
REGIONAL | BG27
The World Bank has committed US$11.8 billion in
the 2013 fiscal year to support Latin America and the
Caribbean resilience in the midst of global turmoil.
The Washington-based financial institution said
this includes resources from its International Bank
for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), Inter-
national Development Association (IDA), International
Finance Corporation (IFC) and Multilateral Investment
Guarantee Agency (MIGA).
The World Bank said it maintained its strong sup-
port for the region approving US$5.2 billion in new
loans in the fiscal year, nearly US$4.8 billion from
IBRD and US$435 million from IDA, the bank s fund
for the poorest countries.
"Support was aimed at generating opportunities
for all through public and private sector projects that
expand public services, improve regional productivity,
competitiveness and integration, create new quality
jobs and assist those most in need," it said, disclosing
that Latin America and the Caribbean received the
largest share of IBRD s total global new lending at
32 per cent, and 16.5 per cent of total IBRD/IDA
IFC, which focuses on supporting the private sector,
provided a record US$6.5 billion to 129 projects in
Latin America and the Caribbean in FY13, the World
In the region, IFC clients support about two million
women through jobs, education and entrepreneurial
It said one in eight people in the region benefit
from infrastructure projects supported by IFC, adding
that its financial sector clients provided 29 million
loans valued at US$217 billion to micro, small and
The World Bank said supporting smaller economies
continues to be a priority for IFC, with US$1 billion
invested in Central America and the Caribbean. Cana
St Kitts-Nevis will receive US$6.4 million from the Inter-
national Monetary Fund (IMF) after the Washington-based
financial institution said it had completed an economic per-
formance of the twin island federation under a 36 month Stand
by Agreement (SBA).
The IMF said that the total funds now disbursed to the island
is US$71.5 million and that it had also approved waivers of
applicability for the end-June 2013 performance criteria, waiver
of non-observance of the continuous performance criterion on
the ceiling of external arrears accumulated on debt contracted
or guaranteed by the central government, and re-phased dis-
bursements under the SBA.
In 2011, the IMF approved the US$79.35 million SBA for St.
Kitts-Nevis and according to the fund s managing director, Min
Zhu, the local authorities "have continued the successful imple-
mentation of their Fund-supported programme, in particular
making progress toward achieving fiscal objectives and debt
"Following a four-year contraction in economic activity, signs
of an economic recovery are emerging. Sustained commitment
to prudent macroeconomic policies and reforms will be necessary
to address remaining risks and vulnerabilities and to support
stronger and inclusive growth."
The IMF official said the 2013 budget is aligned with the
authorities dual objectives of redeploying resources towards
growth-enhancing outlays and continuing fiscal consolidation
through significant budgetary primary surpluses.
He said to boost revenue, while steps are being taken to
improve revenue administration, action will also be needed to
broaden the tax base, in particular to streamline tax exemp-
"Moreover, the fiscal performance of the Nevis Island Admin-
istration could usefully be bolstered and would benefit from
improved communication between the twin-island federation
"The restructuring of public debt has continued, notably
with establishing the legal framework for incremental
debt/land swaps. To help buttress banks income, it is nec-
essary to proceed with launching the land asset management
company, according to best practices, and with land sales.
"Continued collaboration with the Eastern Caribbean Cen-
tral Bank will be needed to monitor and address financial
sector developments and implement reforms," Zhu said,
adding that accelerating the pace of structural reforms is
important to secure lasting gains in fiscal sustainability, neu-
tralize pressures on current outlays, and promote stronger
and inclusive growth.
"Priority should be given to pension and civil service reform
and to streamline the social safety net. Implementing programs
to upgrade education and training skills of job seekers to
enhance their employment prospects will also be important,"
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Denzil Douglas has welcome
the IMF report saying " the IMF has given us a passing grade".
He said the report shows that the "economy continues to
show the signs of improvement which were anticipated when
the planned new economic program was being designed.
"I said to them (IMF Team) when they were here, that I
believe as things turn around, we really have to thank our
public servants, because they, to a large extent displayed
understanding and patience and if things are improving then
they should be the first to benefit from the improvement,"
said Dr Douglas, who announced plans to review the salaries
for public workers, pensioners on the island..
"I really firmly believe that the salaries should be reviewed
and I hope that there is no impediment to this. I know we
have to do it slowly and carefully, but I really think the public
servants should have a review in their wages and salaries,"
he added. Cana
St Kitts-Nevis receives
new funds from IMF
World Bank backs Caribbean's
steady poverty reduction
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