Premier Easton Taylor-Farrell and the acting Financial Secretary Philip Chambers attended a one-day meeting for Contributors of the Special Development Fund (SDF) at the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) in Barbados today.
The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the replenishment of the fund, which supports the next cycle of the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) programmes across the qualified countries for the period 2021-24. Montserrat has been a beneficiary of the fund since it’s inception more than 40 years ago. The current BNTF funding cycle ends December 2020.
The premier and the financial secretary (ag) met with various high level officials within the CDB including the President, Dr Warren Smith, to discuss Montserrat’s continued need to access funds under the BNTF programme.
Premier Farrell is a staunch advocate of the work that the BNTF carries out on Montserrat. He believes that despite what the economic statistics (GDP per capita) may say about the economic classification of Montserrat, that it does not reflect the true socio-economic situation for all residents. He holds the firm belief that the BNTF programme touches the lives of individuals and communities in a way that other aid programmes do not.
This meeting is the first of a series of meetings that will decide the resource envelope of the SDF and the countries that qualify to access various levels of funding.