Once again Leader of the Opposition Hon. Andrew Fahie requested an update from Government on its use of the $25M operating Line of Credit at the CIBC First Caribbean International Bank.
The last update on government’s use of the Line of Credit was provided by Premier and Minister for Finance, Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith during the 13th June sitting of the House of Assembly. However, in an announcement during this week’s sitting it was announced that money was accessed from the Line of Credit recently.
In response to a question from Hon. Fahie during the 1 August sitting Hon. Smith disclosed that the amount expended from the $25M loan facility from the First Caribbean Bank is currently $5M. He also mentioned that the available balance for draw down is $20M.
Further, Hon. Smith stated that on 20 June $10M was paid on the initial loan balance previously reported in the House of Assembly.
Previously, Hon. Smith announced that the $25M Line of Credit that was approved by the House of Assembly last year for the purpose of providing working capital support for the Government was accessed three times to cover public expense.
On 25 April 2016 the House of Assembly approved the Motion that established a $25M operating Line of Credit at the CIBC First Caribbean International Bank. Since then Premier Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith disclosed that the money was accessed more than three times.
The disclosure was made by Premier Smith during the House of Assembly on 18th April in response to a question from Hon. Fahie.
In response Hon. Smith said: “Madam Speaker, the line of credit has been accessed three times since January 2017 – on 11th January, 23rd January and 14th March. The monies drawn went into the Consolidated Fund and used specifically for what it was designed for, that is to cover operating expenses during slow revenue collection periods, and were not allocated for any specific purpose within any Ministry or Department.”