Chairman of the Disaster Recovery Coordination Committee, Brodrick Penn said government might partner private investors to fund the development of the Terrence B Lettsome International Airport.
According to government’s proposed recovery plan, $250 million will be dumped into airport development.
But Penn contradicted the plan today, claiming that government will not spend that much on the Beef Island-based facility.
“The government is not saying we are going to spend $250 million on rebuilding the airport. The government is saying that the airport is critical to the economic development and we want to pursue it. We believe that it will cost around $250 million and what will happen is that the government will explore the best way to do that,” Penn said.
He continued: “It likely will be pursued through a private-type package rather the government going and borrowing $250 million and say ‘here let’s go build an airport’.”
He made the statement during the first public consultation on the proposed recovery plan for the British Virgin Islands.
The Dr D Orlando Smith-led government has come under heavy criticism from giving airport development a quarter-billion-dollar bite of recovery funds.
Government is projecting that the cost to fund recovery over the next five years is $721.3 million.
According to the proposed plan, recovery will be financed by a combination of grants, loans, insurance, statutory borrowings, government spending, private sector partnerships, and support from non-government organizations.