Samuel Maxwell

Come December 2011, Dominica would have benefitted from a total of 92 sub projects under the BNTF-5 Programme. 59 of those projects fell in the category of infrastructure valued at four point $6-million.

The Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF-5) Programme is being funded by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Government of Dominica.

Operations Officer of the Caribbean Development Bank, Samuel Maxwell, on a recent visit to the island disclosed that a total of $5.05 million have been spent on projects across the island.

Some of the projects completed under the BNTF-5 Programme included the construction of the Clifton Health Centre, the Wills Strathmore Stevens Primary School and the Morne Savon water supply project.

“Alas, the BNTF-5 Programme draws to a close. The terminal disbursement date is December 31st of this year. By then, the total of $5.05 million dollars comprised of grant funds and 20 percent counterpart provided by the Government of Dominica will have been spent. I trust that we will all be able to honestly say that the outcomes of all interventions made under that programme, BNTF-5, were beneficial.”

Two other sub projects in Giraudel are currently under implementation and are expected to be completed by December 2011.

Maxwell said that enhancement of skills continues to be the hallmark of all BNTF programmes. The CDB has agreed to fund a special training programme for contractors on the island later this month. The training programme will be spearheaded by the local BNTF office.

“The bank has recently determined that further intervention, jointly sponsored by the BNTF and the Caribbean Technology Consultancy Services Network of CDB, will be undertaken commencing April 18th in Roseau. A workshop is to be financed through the BNTF regional budget held by the CDB and on this occasion, specifically target all of these builders and small contractors like Mr. Nanthon that have participated in the success of BNTF-5. The BNTF-5, in accordance with its mission statement continues its focus on persons such as these in its quest to improve their skills in the management of contracts. A suitable computer-based tool will be introduced to the participants and it is our hope that those persons participating will eventually use it to the full advantage in future response to tenders for BNTF infrastructural projects and perhaps even larger local projects,” he stated.

Meanwhile, the BNTF-6 Programme has already commenced in Dominica. That agreement was signed in February 2009 by the Hon. Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit.
A total of $7.1 million will be spent on a number of projects island-wide under the sixth programme of the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF).

The new phase of the fund will focus on projects involving water supply systems, educational facilities, access, skills training, health and vulnerable groups.