More funding for final phase of project
By Dana Niland
The Inter-American Development Bank has approved a $41 million grant for the fifth and final phase of the Caracol Industrial Park, which has become the main manufacturing hub in northern Haiti.
The current stage of the project aims to create 5,400 new jobs, two-thirds of which will be filled by women, according to the IDB.
By the end of September, the industrial park had employed 7,620 workers, and its goal now is to reach 20,000 positions by 2020.
The IDB has contributed a total of $200.5 million to the project since 2011, and its most recent grant will finance construction of factory shells and other infrastructure at the CIP.
It will also support SONAPI, the Haitian government agency in charge of industrial parks, in its efforts to monitor and enforce environmental, social, health, and safety rules.
SONAPI will also develop a business plan to ensure its long-term sustainability.
The initial stages of the project saw the construction of industrial buildings, internal roads, a wastewater treatment plant, and water purification plant.
The U.S. government also donated a power plant that provides energy to CIP factories as well as to some 9,000 households in nearby communities.
The IDB is Haiti’s leading multilateral donor, and since the 2010 earthquake, has approved over $1.25 billion in grants for agriculture, water and sanitation, energy, education, transport, private sector development, and employment projects.