J$2.0 Billion Disbursed to JEEP/JSIF Through PetroCaribe Development Fund
Since the Cabinet of Jamaica authorised the PetroCaribe Development Fund (PDF) in February 2012 to give support to the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP), Two Billion Jamaican dollars has already been disbursed in financing its initiatives.
The Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme, JEEP, was developed to provide short term employment especially for Jamaicans at the lower socio-economic level. JEEP was not developed to provide a permanent fix to the challenge of unemployment facing the country but as an emergency response to assist in getting people working again.
The PDF has, over the last two financial years, supported the provision of social benefits for the poor, and there has been a concerted focus by the Fund to provide housing units to the most disadvantaged members of the Jamaican society. The organization has facilitated the construction of approximately 3,000 housing units through Food for the Poor and the JEEP Programme at an approximate cost of J$800 Million to date, benefitting over 6000 individuals island wide. Additionally, under the programme, the PDF funds facilitated the upgrading of the gullies and drainage system in the Kingston Metropolitan Area, renovation of juvenile centres and police stations and the overall renovation of the physical and social infrastructure within underserved communities.
The PDF has also given support to the Jamaica Social Investment fund (JSIF) to carry out its activities. One of the many projects receiving support from the PDF is a Sanitation programme to deliver modern sanitary conveniences for schools still using pit latrines, a project the PDF is quite satisfied with its progress. Approximately J$900 Million so far has already been allocated to that programme.
The PDF’s approach to project funding is very targeted in the way its funds are utilized, as it realizes that its resources are not infinite and must be utilized for specific purposes as mandated in the amendment to the Petroleum Act.