St Vincent Pm Clarifies ‘Assistance to Grenada’

Dr Ralph Gonsalves

St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, in a letter has responded to what he described as unreasonable criticism over assistance, given by his government to the cash-strapped Grenada government.

On Monday September 17th, the public relations officer of Grenada’s ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), Arley Gill, publicly commended Gonsalves for assisting Grenada with loans over the past few months.
The money was said to have been made available to Grenada through a borrowing facility at the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank.

The Public Service Union (PSU) in SVG criticised Gonsalves for lending Grenada money to pay civil servants, saying that this was money that should have been used to pay Vincentian public servants an increase.

However, Gonsalves clarified that this was not a loan by St Vincent and the Grenadines to Grenada but, rather, a decision to permit Grenada to use part of the allocation for St Vincent and the Grenadines available for it at the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB).

Gonsalves explained that, at the beginning of each fiscal year, the ECCB allocates, on the basis of a formula, access to financial resources for each member country with very clear limitations and conditions as set out in the ECCB Agreement.

When countries reach that limit they can only have access if another country or countries make(s) available a part to the country in need which was what was done.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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