Guyana is likely to be the first Member State to benefit from a new Country Assistance Programme (CAP) under the CARICOM Development Fund’s (CDF) 2015-2020 funding cycle, since this country is already eligible to receive further support by virtue of having paid up its full assessed contribution to the organisation.
CEO Rodinald Soomer disclosed this recently stating: “The CDF is ready and willing to make this possible and wishes to thank the Government of Guyana for its demonstration of commitment to, and confidence in the CDF.
“The CAP allocated in the first cycle, which went towards a major road programme to improve access to farms and expand agricultural production by bringing new lands under cultivation, received a high grade from independent evaluators and was recommended for expansion. The programme was assessed to be well managed, and to have been characterized by a significant level of local ownership and participation,” Soomer noted.
He added that a team from the CDF commenced discussions with the national focal point in Guyana during the last monitoring mission, which included preliminary discussions on possible projects for funding in the upcoming cycle. Soomer advised that Guyana is in the process of internal consultations to be in a position to present a formal programme early in the new year for the CDF’s consideration.
“Immediate future assistance to Guyana will be framed within the context of implementation of CDF’s new strategic plan through the execution of which we project to distribute resources to an estimated total value of US$86 million.
“These resources are expected to be spread across eight thematic areas, including support to Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises (SME), energy efficiency, select infrastructure, human capacity development, interest subsidies and regional projects,” Soomer stated.
He added that under the new cycle there is potential for a larger proportion of grant funding to be made available to eligible CARICOM Member States, subject to the signature and ratification of an amendment to the CDF agreement, which has already been put to Member States for action.