The government of Kuwait has agreed to fund four projects put forward to them by Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell during a recent meeting.
During Tuesday’s weekly post-Cabinet press briefing held at the Ministerial Complex, Prime Minister Mitchell disclosed that he expected the four projects to come on stream shortly through the financial assistance agreed to by Kuwait.
He said the first project that will be funded by the Kuwaiti Fund, along with the funding from Saudi Arabia and OPEC is the third phase of the Farm and Feeder roads project.
“… The three institutions have agreed to fund the project and they were meeting within now and November to finalise how much each fund will in fact invest in that particular project, it will be quite a significant amount of roads,” PM Mitchell told reporters.
According to Dr. Mitchell, Kuwait has also agreed to fund the construction of the Governor General’s new residence.
“As you know this is something that affects all of us. We can’t have a situation where our Head of State doesn’t have a government home to reside, that is of course consistent with that office so we made a request and they said they were quite happy to advance that particular project,” he said.
The official residence of the Governor-General on Upper Lucas Street in St. George’s was destroyed by the passage of Hurricane Ivan in September 2004.
The former National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration of Tillman Thomas had originally secured funds from Australia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to utilise the grounds of Government House to rebuilt Parliament that was also destroyed during Ivan.
Australia has since reneged on the agreement and the 19-month old Mitchell government has reportedly brokered a deal with Mexico to fill the funding void created by Australia.
PM Mitchell also announced at the press conference that government has successfully put forward a proposal to Kuwait for US $25 million in soft loan financing to build additional homes in the country.
“We recognise that the whole question of housing is one of the most critical factors outside of unemployment in the country. We see that as the most important factor – once again they agreed that they will be able to finance this project while waiting for the details of that particular project,” he said.
The Prime Minister identified the third project for which government is seeking finance from the Arab world as the US $12 million St George’s water sewage project to be undertaken by the Ministry of Works.
The Grenadian leader spoke of his administration being praised by the Kuwaiti government for curbing what he said were some of the problems created by the previous administration with CCC, the Kuwaiti-owned road construction company.
“They expressed their happiness with the present government for correcting the problems that existed with CCC under the previous government where debts were not honoured, where harassment was given to the Contractor who is a Kuwaiti contractor”, he said.
“…We brought them up to date and they agreed and concurred that we have met every bit of the rearrangement we made to meet our payments to the debts incurred before,” he added.
During the campaign for the February 2013 general elections, Dr. Mitchell and NNP assured the nation that if they were returned to power hundreds of former CCC employees will be back on the job.