Fri | Jan 15, 2021

Trump administration remains committed to Ja’s development – Tapia

Published:Friday | November 27, 2020 | 3:01 PM
United States Ambassador to Jamaica, Donald Tapia - File photo.

Jonielle Daley, Gleaner Writer 

Defending Washington’s commitment to Kingston, United States Ambassador to Jamaica, Donald Tapia, said despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the American economy, the Trump administration, for the remaining two months in the White House, will not cut back on aid to the island and other developing countries.    

According to Tapia, beyond plans by the government, US investors have expressed interest in the development of industrial, commercial, and residential properties in Jamaica. 

He was speaking this morning during a virtual forum put on by the US embassy while at his home in Arizona.

Tapia, who was recently flown to the US for urgent medical care, said that he remains in high spirits.

He indicated that one of the investors, which he did not name, is seeking to develop 686 acres of land.

He added that he is hoping that the entity will be able to enter the country within the next four to six weeks.

Tapia noted that the move is coming amid a disclosure by the National Works Agency that it would take $1 trillion to efficiently upgrade the country’s roads.

READ: ‘Blood Out Of Stone’ - NWA chief says agency doomed to fail

Jamaica’s roads took a battering recently from heavy rains leaving the Government with a nearly $8 billion bill.

In the same breath, the US ambassador used the occasion to again echo concerns about China’s presence in Jamaica through investments and agreements in infrastructural development and accused the country of using its position to interfere in local affairs.

“As I said once before don’t sell your freedom, don’t sell your country, don’t give your country away to another country,” he said.

Tapia’s claims have been rejected by the Chinese.

Meanwhile, he is urging locals to take advantage of the more than 1.3 million Jamaicans living in the US as a means of boosting exports amid the current economic slowdown.

Tapia argued that this will augur well for Jamaica and US relations.

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