BVI News

UK considering to amend financial management deal to include BVI disaster clause

Premier Andrew Fahie and UK minister responsible for Overseas Territories, Lord Tariq Ahmad.

Borrowing restrictions currently placed on the territory in the Protocols for Effective Financial Management agreement between the BVI and the UK could be waived if ever the territory is impacted by a major natural disaster or catastrophic event.

Premier Andrew Fahie said this is possible through a ‘natural disaster clause’ that the UK is prepared to consider based on concerns government had raised over the impact of future disasters on the territory.

He said: “Your BVI Government stated that the borrowing ratios in the debt section of the Protocols for Effective Financial Management did not sufficiently consider the impact of natural disasters and catastrophic events which can place the territory in an unforeseen vulnerable position.”

The financial agreement – which was signed in 2012 – currently prohibits the BVI government from borrowing more than 80 per cent of its recurring revenue.

Since concerns were raised, Fahie said: “The UK government stated to us that it is prepared to consider including a reference to natural disasters and catastrophic events in the debt section of the Protocols for Effective Financial Management.”

We will be impacted by natural disasters

While addressing members of the media this week, Premier Fahie argued that, based on the territory’s geographical location, the BVI is not only susceptible to hurricanes, but also to other disasters such as earthquakes.

And should any of these disasters impact the territory to any great degree, the BVI might need to borrow extensively to rebuild; as is now the case since hurricanes Irma and Maria.

“The BVI is no time soon moving from the path from where hurricanes come. They are not moving from the path of the earthquake belt, because we are on an earthquake belt whether people want to hear it or not,” Premier Fahie said.

“So there are a lot of unforeseen catastrophic events that can happen and we want to make sure that those are taken into consideration or removed on how we want to deal with the ratios.”

Provisions needed to be made

He said in the event of another impact by a natural disaster, the territory would never be inside the confines of borrowing requirements outlined in the aforementioned BVI-UK agreement.

Premier Fahie said making provisions in the agreement for disasters was one of of the things the BVI wanted, going into recent negotiations with the UK about its loan guarantee offer.

“We want to ensure that when we go to financial institutions that the conditions as much as possible are in favour of the people of the Virgin Islands and they will have a better stake in the main players in this recovery,” he surmised.

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8 Comments

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  1. Why did he go to the UK? says:

    What nonsense is this boss! These are common sense things that any sensible country would understand and discuss when they happen. During the hurricanes of 2017, even the local banks made adjustments and gave customers three months reprieve on loan payments. That is why having a good relationship is important. You are wrecking the UK BVI relationship with your childish behavior geared towards getting your hand on the recovery loan money.
    Premier! Why did you go to the UK? Nothing sensible has been said by you yet to justify this PR save facing stunt! You really taking the BVI people for idiots.

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    • looking glass says:

      That is a very interesting read. Did he go there with one half-baked objective in mind but was then reduced to asking for trivial things?

  2. vip heckler says:

    I want to also hear the Governor’s version because as we all know this premier has a problem with the truth.

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  3. vip heckler says:

    ISN’T THE FINANCIAL SECRETARY QUALIFIED TO SPEAK???? WHY MR FAHIE DON’T GIVE SOMEBODY ELSE A CHANCE TO SPEAK?????? WHY WALK WITH THEM IF THEY CANT SPEAK???? WE WANT TO ALSO HEAR FROM THE ENTOURAGE

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    • @VIP Heckler says:

      @VIP Heckler, the FS serve in a support role to the Minister of Finance. The Premier/MOF delegates responsibility(s) as he sees fit. Stop creating a storm in a tea cup. If the Premier was not speaking and delegating everything, you would be calling him a duncy head.

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      • vip heckler says:

        What the premier doing is micro managing every department. He ain’t giving a soul a chance to say or do anything unless he is involved. It’s either he doesn’t trust any one or he feels that they all are incompetent

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    • U vip heckler idiot says:

      You are a hater and you shouldnt be online chatting crap when you have no solution too and even in respect to uk we have or say as a country and stop butt kissing uk A fir everything. Good steps in going forward chief not like the sellout ndp cat in abag method. Its sad you had nothing to say when you was benefiting from ndp bad governance but have world if complain now. You are the same jokers that make this country sick. Speak solution not hate.

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      • Oh Oh says:

        I do believe VIP Heckler has a point or two. The Premier is demonstrating that he’s a micro manager and therefore he seems like he doesn’t have confidence in his team. I am not impressed by what he’s done or doing. The U.K. trip he went out of here blazing and came back with a piss poor report. He is taking all of us for fools with his wax eloquent speeches. No content and not a thing with sense. I want to know when he plans to get down to business and what are their plans for this country. Otherwise this loony toon show got to stop.

        Like 5
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