Bahamas PM calls for focus to resolve crisis

MEDELLIN, Colombia – In the face of extraordinarily difficult and uncertain times, the Rt Honourable Hubert Ingraham, Prime Minister of the Bahamas has called on leaders to be clear in their purpose and firm in their resolve.

In remarks at the closing session of the 50th Annual Inter-American Development Bank/Inter-American Investment Corporation (IDB/IIC) Meeting in Medellin, Colombia, Prime Minister Ingraham noted that most economies would record negative growth, declining tourist receipts, reduced levels of foreign direct investments, increased fiscal deficits, escalating levels of public sector debt and rising unemployment.

“In such times leaders must be clear in their purpose and firm in their resolve. They must resist the temptation to find illusionary causes for or solutions to our global dilemma. Rather, we must focus sharply on the real issues and address ourselves in the most determined way to resolving them. The fate of our people depend upon our doing so,” he said. The IDB/IIC Meeting was held to examine policies and new initiatives. The Boards of Governors are the highest policymaking bodies of the IDB and the IIC. Their members are finance ministers, presidents of central banks or other high-ranking officials from the organization’s 48 member countries.

The IDB is the leading source of long-term lending for Latin America and the Caribbean and its Annual Meeting is the premier forum for discussion of political, economic and social development in the region Speaking on behalf of the Caribbean Constituency – Barbados, the Bahamas, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, Mr. Ingraham called on the Bank to develop a new institutional strategy that made effective use of additional resources to support social safety net programmes, poverty and inequality reduction, infrastructure investments and climate change.

Mr. Ingraham also said he looked forward to the re-evaluation of the Bank’s private sector policy to support the Region’s development and exploration of other measures to help expand capital flows to the public and private sectors of the Region.

“These initiatives are of special concern to us,” Prime Minister Ingraham said.

He also urged the Bank to continue its role as the institutional standard-bearer for the Region and in its determination as a key interlocutor in the dialogue between member countries, the public sector, the private sector and civil society.

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