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Gov’t to take up ‘something like a loan’ for infrastructure works- Premier Wheatley

Gov’t to take up ‘something like a loan’ for infrastructure works- Premier Wheatley

Virgin Islands Premier and Minister of Finance, Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) says his coalition government is looking to take up ‘something like a loan’ for more infrastructural works in the Virgin Islands (VI).

"We need to make a heavy investment in our infrastructure, in our roads, in our bridges, in our drains, in our culverts, all of these different areas of our infrastructure need investment,” he said during a one-on-one press conference on July 22, 2022.

According to the Premier; however, those infrastructural works can only be done if an injection of funds is made into the infrastructure "through something like a loan, so persons very soon will hear me speaking to them about going to get a sizable loan to be able to invest.”

He said this investment will not only include road infrastructure but the rebuilding of schools as well as continuing recovery efforts.

Dr Wheatley revealed; however, that his government is not considering a large loan like that of the £300M loan guarantee offered by the United Kingdom (UK).

He noted too that most of the $65M loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has been expended.

Virgin Islands Premier and Minister of Finance, Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) says his government is looking to take up ‘something like a loan’ for more infrastructure works in the Virgin Islands.


Most of CDB loan expended - Dr Wheatley


“There’s no more money from that to do any new projects [as] most of the projects for that $65M loan are already in train, ongoing, or completed.

“So, we need to get some funding to continue our recovery, so it will be another loan, but it will be another loan that we can service the debt form,” he said.

Hon Wheatley said an announcement will come ahead of any loan as well as a demonstration of how the Government will service the debt and meet all its ongoing obligations.

He added that while the loan won't necessarily be from the UK, the Virgin Islands would still have to have a discussion with the UK on borrowing.

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