First IMF Funds on Way to Jamaica

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Above: Kingston (CJ Photo)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

The first tranche of $207 million under Jamaica’s agreement with the International Monetary Fund was slated to be deposited into Jamaica’s account on Friday.

Confirmation of the funding was revealed by Jamaica Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller in a post-budget press conference on Friday.

Of that funding $90 million will be used for budgetary support.

Simpson Miller said her government’s growth plan aimed to create jobs and achieve “sustainable improvement in the lives of all Jamaicans.”

“These initiatives, which are fast-tracking, will create thousands of jobs and opportunities for Jamaican businesses,” she said. “They will have a positive impact on economic growth and national development.”

The IMF and Jamaica have set out what Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips called “conservative” growth targets, something the government will try to exceed.

“The mission of the administration, now that we have concluded this phase of the negotiations, is to try to augment the positive growth side over and above those expectations,” he said.

“We can either, as a country, talk ourselves into the depths of despondency and hopelessness or we can decide, as thousands of Jamaicans do every day in the face of difficulties and hardships, to get up and move with hope, with expectations, with confidence and faith in the Almighty, that we will in fact achieve the objectives set,” he said.