Transshipment project under consideration, but not for Goat Islands – PM
Prime Minister Andrew Holness says the Jamaican government will not be going ahead with plans to develop a transshipment port and industrial park on Goat Islands in the Portland Bight protected area.
The development comes only days after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published the Government's Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies which said the administration was pressing ahead with the project.
Speaking in New York last night, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said while a transshipment project is under consideration, it will not be on the Goat Islands
He says the government is keen on growth and development but the potential environmental fallout makes the Goat Islands unsuitable.
He stated the information contained in the document published by the IMF citing the Goat Islands project does not accurately represent the decision of his government.
"The entry into an official document may not have represented the decision of the Government," Holness responded to a question posed on the issue at a town hall.
However, he did not explain how the entry ended up in the document which the Government submitted to the IMF.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister says he will be making a statement in Parliament to clarify the matter.
Chinese firm China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) wants to construct a transshipment port at Goat Islands, but there have been strong push back from environmentalists.
They claim such a project would disturb marine life and ruin a significant part of the Portland Bight.
The debate on the project reignited this week after the IMF document was published claiming the government would be going ahead with plans for the Goat Islands.