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Posted: Thursday 9 May, 2024 at 8:22 PM

IMF's Managing Director speaks climate resilience in the Caribbean

By: Staff Reporter,

    BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — MANAGING Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva has highlighted the importance of understanding and investing in climate resilience for small island states like those in the Caribbean, including St. Kitts and Nevis.


    The IMF executive discussed the need to address the volatility of the Citizenship by Investment Program, a key component of the local economy, while considering climate resilience with journalist at an IMF-sponsored training programme in Chile recently. 


    She emphasized the importance of several key areas in the context of these discussions:


    "“Clearly, understanding measures that they can take to reduce vulnerability to climate shocks, investing in resilience, is and has to be top of mind for the leadership and the people in these countries," Georgieva said in response to an SKNVibes question. "From an economic standpoint, the best investment in resilience is to have sound macroeconomic fundamentals, to have good fiscal policy, to use revenues wisely, to invest in what makes us more resilient. We know what it is. Resilient people that are educated, healthy, with good social protection. So when a shock hits, they don't get completely devastated."


    Georgieva also highlighted the need to focus on agriculture and insurance schemes to enable swift recovery from climate-related impacts. She called for international support, naming the Caribbean as a priority for the IMF's Resilience and Sustainability Trust, from which Jamaica and Barbados have already benefited.


    "Resilient economy, one in which attention is being paid to agriculture, very important for the Caribbean, where you can build and where you shouldn't. And insurance schemes that allow, if you are hit, to have recovery pretty much set in motion. These countries also deserve support from the international community. For us at the Fund, the Caribbean is one of our priority areas for our Resilience and Sustainability Trust," the MD noted.


    The IMF's strategy includes not only providing fiscal space through disbursements but also engaging with the private sector and other organizations to expand financing. These efforts aim to strengthen the region's overall economic resilience.


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