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No New Loans With China

Prime Minister Andrew Holness, says his administration will not be negotiating any new loan programmes with the Chinese.

Mr. Holness who made the announcement during an official visit to Beijing, China last week, says the move is in keeping with the commitment to reduce Jamaica’s debt rapidly.

The decision was taken as Jamaica and China have agreed upon a new strategic framework to supplement the already existing cooperation agreement.

According to the Prime Minister under the new framework, investments will be more strategic.

He says they’ll be focused on the development of special economic zones and logistics hubs, urban centre development, water and sewerage, agriculture, and affordable housing.

The Prime Minister went on to say that infrastructure projects will take the modalities of joint venture partnerships, public-private partnerships, directly between Jamaican firms and Chinese firms as the normal course of business.

Under the new framework, the two governments have also agreed to focus efforts on increasing trade, particularly to encourage more Jamaican goods and services to be exported to the Chinese market.

Mr. Holness says this process has already begun with the export of live lobster into China.

He says the government is in the process of finalizing procedures with the Chinese authorities to allow for the export of frozen lobster.

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