ST GEORGE’S, Grenada -- Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell has assured the nation that better days are coming because the international community has bought into Grenada’s Home Grown Program.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell
He told a constituency forum last week that the government has been able to negotiate support to the tune of EC$300 million for the three-year Home Grown Program.
The Grenada leader said that the much needed financial support could start to flow soon, with most of the boards meeting in June. He is anticipating a positive response.
“As soon as the IMF signs onto the program, the World Bank will deliver the first US$10 million; the IMF will come with theirs; the Caribbean Development Board has already endorsed US$10 million for each year that’s US$30 million for the three years,” Mitchell said.
He indicated that tangible support is also expected from the European Union, which will be providing grants. Mitchell indicated that he received positive news from a senior European official last week.
The official, according to the prime minister, said that they will be disbursing grants to Grenada as soon as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) signs onto the program.
“As soon as the IMF signs on in June, we will be disbursing grant sums to you; and its more than we told you in the beginning,” Mitchell quoted the European official as saying.
Mitchell said that because of the negotiating skills of government some of the country’s creditors have decided to assist by taking a haircut by as much as 50%.
“If we owe somebody for example 100 million, they are prepared to take 50 million off from that; isn’t that a lot,” Mitchell said.
“So if they are giving us a 50% haircut and they tell us we have to raise some tax with a little pain, can we allow that to go a begging,” he remarked.
Mitchell is painting an impressive picture moving forward with the tangible support of at least EC$100 million dollars a year and debt relief of 50% from the international community.
“With the cash we are getting from the international community; with the initiatives we are taking to bring investors to Grenada; what it means is that there will be a significant lift for every man, woman and child in Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique,” he said.