Eastern Caribbean Central Bank Plans for Growth

(Mckoys News) – Eastern Caribbean Central Bank: The ECCB released its new Strategic Plan this month, aiming to transform the region. The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) is having a good year. In March the institution posted a $6.3m profit after three consecutive years in the black. This growth reflected the strength of the EC dollar which, at press time, had a backing ratio of 98.3 per cent – well above the statutory baseline of 60 per cent and even exceeding the bank’s 80 per cent operational target.

Fresh from these successes, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank is continuing its forward momentum with the launch of a new roadmap for growth. Unveiled earlier this month, the 2017-2021 Strategic Plan is a “new vision for a new era” according to ECCB Governor Timothy Antoine. He says people are at the heart of the initiative which calls for a new approach to tackle new challenges with the ultimate aim of delivering “socio-economic transformation”.
“It is about raising the quality of life of the people of this region,” says the Governor. “That is essentially the mission of the bank.”
To deliver on the ECCB’s twin mandate of maintaining financial stability and promoting economic development, the strategic plan identifies five main goals including enhancing organisational effectiveness, maintaining the EC dollar, strengthening the financial sector and being an effective advisor to the region’s governments.

A challenging climate

It is a comprehensive and wide-ranging plan, designed to meet the Caribbean’s challenges head-on. Antoine says: “This plan comes at a time when our region is confronted by many challenges, including slow growth, high unemployment and increased frequency and severity of natural disasters.”
The latter is especially relevant given the region’s recent battering by hurricanes Irma and Maria – two back to back category five storms which devastated parts of the Eastern Caribbean last month. Addressing the United Nations Assembly in September, Saint Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet highlighted this issue, and Saint Lucia’s vulnerability, saying: “It is impossible to avoid the facts of climate change. What is fast becoming the new normal is the intensification of extreme weather events which demands from us real solutions in real time. No longer can we depend on old mechanisms with dense bureaucracies that delay or limit a nation’s ability to safeguard its citizens during a crisis and slow the rebuilding effort.”
This year, Irma and Maria are bound to make a dent in the region’s forecasted 3 per cent growth. The ECCB’s new strategy is focusing on making the region more resilient, creating a Regional Resilience Fund that all island nations in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) will contribute to and benefit from.

“Governments would consistently set aside a portion of revenues from the Citizenship by Investment funds, where they exist. [These] can then be leveraged to attract climate finance from the various facilities established to support the Paris Climate Accord,”explains Antoine. “You save for the rainy day and God knows it has been raining quite heavily around these parts lately.”

In addition, the bank intends to continue to engage in the expansion of infrastructure for clean energy projects. In this area it is leading by example with plans to green the entire ECCB campus in St Kitts within five years, making it wholly carbon neutral. “We are taking the lead, to signal to the world that this is important to us,” says Antoine. “Global warming is hurting our economies so we are not just talking, we are taking it seriously.”

Contributed by Dr. Colin O Jarrett

Recently Published



A body that was fished from the sea behind the Lucea bus park on October 27th is said to be that of returning resident Seymour Samuels. Samuels went missing on October 25th and the body was recovered two days after he was reported missing. It took the security forces 44 days to inform the family […]

Falmouth's Call for KFC Restaurant Answered

Falmouth’s Call for KFC Restaurant Answered

Mckoy,s Business News: There were many happy faces on Saturday, December 15 when franchise owners for KFC opened it’s 36th restaurant in Falmouth Trelawny. Managing Director for Restaurants of Jamaica Mark Myers said at the official opening at Champion Plaza that the call has been answered as residents of the parish usually have to travel […]

Bank Surprises Single Mom By Paying Off $150k In Student Loans [Video]

Bank Surprises Single Mom By Paying Off $150k In Student Loans [Video]

A 30-year-old nurse and single mother with around $150,000 in student loan debt received a life-changing surprise Wednesday. Jasmin Ford was surprised with the news that Fifth Third Bank would pay off all of her student loans. “I still can’t find the words,” Ford said Thursday. “I’m off work again today and I’m just sort […]

Oshane Lindsay Burnt to Death in Swallowfield
‘This Man Has A Heart Of Gold’: Homeless Man Gets New Apartment For First Time In 13 Years

‘This Man Has A Heart Of Gold’: Homeless Man Gets New Apartment For First Time In 13 Years

For those of us who have never been homeless, we won’t know how it feels to be without a roof over our head or to wonder when our next meal will be. Here is one story of a man who spent years on the street but never gave up hope. Kenny Edward, of Antioch, California, […]