Tue | Jan 23, 2018

Canada funds facility to manage Caribbean natural resources

Published:Sunday | April 3, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Workmen watch as a truck is loaded with bauxite. The Inter-American Development Bank will identify and implement best practices in the management of natural resources linked to extractive industries, such as mining, under a project being funded by the Canadian government.

Caribbean countries are to benefit from a CAN$20 million Canadian Extractive Sector Facility (CANEF) that is being established at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The bank said that the Canadian government is providing the funds for the facility that will support knowledge generation activities and technical assistance throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.

Specialists from the IDB will identify and implement best practices in the management of natural resources linked to extractive industries (oil, gas and mining), with particular attention to the implementation of environmental and social safeguards.

"Our country has long been a key partner of the IDB in its activities in the extractive sector in particular. Canada and countries in Latin America and the Caribbean share the conviction that natural resources can help boost inclusive economic growth in the long term when the sector is handled with transparency, openness and efficiency," said Ambassador Guillermo Enrique Rishchynski, executive director for Canada at the IDB.

The project will focus on generating regional public goods that promote long-term prospects, responsible investment and good relations between actors in the sector. It seeks to address specific technical challenges and to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and technologies. In addition, CANEF will support technical assistance efforts in at least three countries to contribute to strengthening the governance of natural resources by improving regulatory and institutional frameworks and improving infrastructure information management.

"This project reflects our commitment to finding innovative solutions that improve the investment climate and economic, social and environmental sustainability of the extractive sector in Latin America and the Caribbean. This sector is the backbone of the economy of many of our countries," said Ramon Espinasa, IDB Project Team Leader.

The Canadian facility will allow the execution of projects with a non-reimbursable technical co-operation grant within five years. The grant will finance projects to promote knowledge generation and improved governance in the extractive sector.