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BVI too rich to benefit from UK’s aid budget, report finds

A section of Tortola damaged by Hurricane Irma. (Photo credit: Ve-Anna Thomas).

While the United Kingdom has billions of dollars set aside in its aid budget to assist Overseas Territories in times of need, the British Virgin Islands might not receive a cent from the budgeted amount.

This is because the BVI has been deemed as too rich a territory to benefit from the £13bn aid budget, according to a BBC report.

“Under international aid rules, Anguilla, Turks and Caicos and the British Virgin Islands are considered too wealthy to qualify for assistance,” the report said, noting that there are strict international rules on what officially counts as foreign aid.

These are agreed upon by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris, of which Britain is a member.

“Aerial footage shows destruction on British Virgin Islands
and these rules make clear that only the poorest countries can receive what is known as official development assistance or ODA.
The OECD confirmed that Anguilla, Turks and Caicos and the British Virgin Islands do not qualify for this official aid. Their national incomes are too high,” the BBC report noted.

It added that in order for the UK to help out its wealthy hurricane-battered territories, the money will have to be drawn from various other sources across government.

The government has pledged £57m so far to help with recovery efforts.

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