LOAN GUARANTEE: UK WILLING TO TALK

0

Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew Fahie disclosed on Wednesday 21 August that
the United Kingdom has responded to the concerns that he raised in a public statement and
public meetings on Tortola and Virgin Gorda.
Hon. Fahie’s concerns relating to the loan guarantee that is being facilitated by the United
Kingdom government were first mentioned in a statement to the Territory that was issued on
16 August. In that statement the Premier explained that his government was concerned that
too much power has been vested in the Recovery Development Agency (RDA) and the
Territory is being required to include funds that were not part of those sourced for recovery.
The Premier also expressed concern that accessing a loan would place the Territory outside of
the ratios that have been stipulated in the Protocols for Effective Financial Management.
Therefore, Hon. Fahie stated that he intended to have a meeting with the UK government on
those matters.
According the Hon. Fahie the UK was listening to the first public meeting where the residents
endorsed the Premier’s concerns. The Premier said at the 21 August meeting that he had
received word from the UK on the matter.
Hon. Fahie said: “Today is the first day that I get something from the UK saying that we’re
willing to extend time for you to get back inside the ratio, if you end up outside.”
However, Hon. Fahie said that the UK’s correspondence did not present a definitive position
on the matter of the ratio: “They didn’t say they are willing, they say they are willing to talk
about it,” the Premier explained. 
“I received that today (Wednesday) after the meetings they saw last night. Everybody is
listening along those lines which they should be. I am not going to let anybody make me
afraid to speak on behalf of the people of the Virgin Islands, but I am going to do so
respectfully,” Hon. Fahie added.
Nonetheless, the Premier said that he is still asking the UK to renegotiate some of the areas
of the agreement and he noted that his government is trying to meet their end of the
arrangement as well:  “Most of what they are concerned about we are going to work on,” he
added.

Share.