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(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) Jamaica, on Tuesday at the Second Special Meeting of the Council for Finance and Planning (COFAP), joined Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago in making an initial pledge to the regional Development Fund. Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago had made initial pledges last December at the First Special Meeting of COFAP.

The Fund was established under the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas including the Single Market and Economy, for the purpose of providing financial or technical assistance to Disadvantaged Countries, Regions and Sectors.

At Tuesday’s meeting in Kingston, Jamaica, the Council asked a Technical Team examining issues related to the regional Development Fund to continue its work and report to a meeting of the Council in May 2006.

The First Special Meeting also held in Kingston last December had established the Team under the leadership of the President of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) Dr Compton Bourne.

This Team was required to make recommendations to the Second Special Meeting on how to bring the Development Fund into operation, its financing and its management. The Team presented numerous options to the Council at Tuesday’s meeting with respect to the operation, financing and management of the Fund.

After consideration of the recommendations, the Council presided over by the Prime Minister of St Kitts and Nevis, Dr the Hon Denzil Douglas, who is also that country’s Minister of Finance, asked the Team to refine its recommendations and report back to the Council at the meeting in May on a date to be determined.

The Council also received a report from the Committee of Central Bank Governors with respect to enhanced monetary co-operation issues. The Council requested that the Committee continue its work and advise the COFAP within the context of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy

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