As the delegation of government officials heads to the United Kingdom to negotiate better conditions of the UK’s loan guarantee offer, Premier Andrew Fahie has said he will also be asking Britain to fund a number of local scholarships to sweeten the deal.
In a public statement ahead of his trip on Tuesday, September 10, Fahie said he will be seeking, among other things, to get locals integrated into Britain’s militia.
He said: “I will be using this opportunity to ask the UK government for scholarships for our people in areas such as, but not limited to hotel management, marine industries, medical training, and aviation training and for recruitment in BVI for their navy and other armed forces.”
“Also, I expect to have talks with the UK’s tourist authority to assist in branding BVI as a sand and sea destination as we create more opportunities for our people. With God’s help, I am mindful that I am to create a myriad of opportunities for my people,” Fahie added.
The BVI’s terms for accepting UK’s offer
As for the negotiations specific to the UK’s offer of a £300 million loan guarantee, the Premier said he and his delegation will be entering the talks with “an open mind”.
He, however, said certain conditions are “a must” for the BVI.
“As we go off to the UK to redefine the conditions surrounding the loan guarantee, the principles that the people of the BVI must be economically empowered, and Cabinet must steward the outcome of the procurement, with all loan funding going to the consolidated fund or a special fund to be set up with criteria to be met before transferring to the Recovery & Development Agency,” Fahie said.
The Premier further said the territory is headed into “uncharted seas”. He said his government must, therefore, remember that they have “not truly served” until they have made the lives of locals better.
Below is an audio clip of the Premier’s full statement.
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