News Date: March 27 2018
The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) says it will provide a grant of £974, 000 to the Government of Jamaica to prepare a feasibility and design study for the development of an agriculture project for communities in St Catherine and Clarendon.
The St Catherine and Clarendon Agricultural Development project is being funded through a grant from the United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Partnership Fund (UKCIF), which is administered by CDB.
“The agriculture sector plays a significant role in Jamaica's socio-economic development, and provides employment opportunities for rural residents. In St Catherine and Clarendon, there are large areas of land which are being underutilized, and which could provide opportunities for expanding the sector,” a CDB release quotes its Head of Infrastructure Partnerships Andrew Dupigny.
“The plans and designs developed under this feasibility study will lay the groundwork for a project to enhance the productivity of farmers in these parishes,” he added.
According to the CDB, the feasibility study will establish capacity for an agriculture project, including an irrigation system and associated production and marketing systems. Challenges for the agriculture sector in Jamaica include irregular rainfall patterns and an increase in the frequency of droughts. Clarendon and St Catherine were among six areas identified for the development of major irrigation systems in Jamaica, of which three have been completed. One is being financed through a previously approved UKCIF grant.
The fund provides grant financing to eight Caribbean countries eligible for Overseas Development Assistance, and UK Overseas Territory, Montserrat.
“This project is consistent with CDB's strategic objective of supporting inclusive and sustainable growth and development, as well as CDB's corporate priority of supporting agriculture and rural development,” the release said.