World Bank provides US$56M to support Sustainable Blue Economy Growth in the Eastern Caribbean

May 3, 2022

The Unleashing the Blue Economy of the Caribbean (UBEC) Project was granted IDA financing of US$56 million by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors to support several Eastern Caribbean countries in developing the sustainable economic potential of their living marine and coastal assets and ultimately achieve a more sustainable tourism model.

Of the total amount, Grenada will receive $15 million, Saint Lucia will receive $18 million, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines will receive $15 million; the remaining US$8 million will be provided to the OECS Commission an IDA grant for integrated regional interventions.

An additional amount of US$1 million each will be provided by The World Bank’s PROBLUE Multidonor Trust Fund to Grenada, Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines as well as US$1 million to the OECS Commission.

The Blue Economy intends on providing financing for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, increased access to fisheries sector risk insurance, strengthened coastal resilience, improved waste management practices, and greater regional collaboration.”

Lilia Burunciuc, the World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean stated that the project is designed to address key investment priorities in each country, helping them on their path of economic recovery.”

The impact of COVID-19 presents an opportunity to create a more sustainable, higher-value, and more resilient industry that caters to culturally and environmentally aware and responsible visitors. Blue tourism focuses on activities that have little impact on the environment, protect natural resources, and benefit local people.

The project also supports the growth of women-owned and operated business in the blue economy, which was realized through the introduction a regional MSME matching grants program. Increased access to capital will also encourage further similar expansion in the Blue Economy.

This initiative stems from the recent success of the Caribbean Regional Oceanscape Project that supported development of policies and institutional reforms to improve the sustainability of tourism assets and coastal and marine natural resources.


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