USAID Administrator Mark Green Visits Bridgetown, Barbados

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For Immediate Release

Tuesday, December 17, 2019
Office of Press Relations
Telephone: +1.202.712.4320 | Email:

The following is attributable to Acting Spokesperson Pooja Jhunjhunwala:

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Mark Green visited Bridgetown, Barbados, from December 15-16, 2019, to announce an additional $10 million as part of the U.S.-Caribbean Resilience Partnership to improve the ability to prepare for, and recover from, natural disasters in the Caribbean region. With this new funding, USAID will work with community-level organizations, host-country governments, regional institutions, and the private sector to strengthen local, national, and regional planning and preparation for hurricanes, earthquakes, and other calamities. For example, USAID will finance training for local first-responders, harmonize disaster-preparedness standards, and coordinate and facilitate information-sharing among the governments of the region and civil society.

This is in addition to the $2 million USAID contributed earlier this year to the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology in Barbados, part of the Caribbean Meteorological Organisation (CMO), to strengthen systems for weather research and forecasting across the region. Earlier this year, USAID also launched its new Caribbean Energy Initiative, a five-year effort with an initial investment of $5 million that will help reduce electricity prices, increase the quality of service, and enhance the ability of electrical grids in the region to withstand shocks.

Complementing these investments, USAID also recently announced a $25 million loan guarantee with the National Commercial Bank of Jamaica (NCB) to increase lending to households and small- and medium-sized companies across the Caribbean region to make investments in renewable energy and the generation of power, as well as to promote economic growth and create jobs. The guarantee will enable NCB to expand such lending throughout the region, including in Barbados, Grenada, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.

While in Bridgetown, the Administrator met with the Honorable Senator Jerome Walcott, Foreign Minister of Barbados, to underscore continuing commitment of the United States to the nations and people of the Caribbean, and to discuss areas of mutual concern, including the crisis in Venezuela. The Administrator also met with youth beneficiaries of USAID's regional crime-prevention projects and visited ongoing resilience efforts.

Through the U.S.-Caribbean 2020 Strategy, and under the umbrella of the U.S.-Caribbean Strategic Engagement Act of 2016 (H.R. 4939) and the U.S.-Caribbean Resilience Partnership, the United States remains committed to working with the people of the Caribbean to promote security, prosperity, and resilience in the face of natural disasters.