Thursday, February 21, 2008

IRELAND ADDS 2.4MILLION USD TO CARIBBEAN DIASTER FUND

GEORGETOWN, Cayman Islands, February 21, 2008 -

The Irish government will pump US$2.4 million into the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) which provides participating governments with quick financial relief in the event of catastrophic hurricanes and earthquakes.

A bulletin from the Cayman Islands-registered CCRIF indicated that the contribution is the latest addition to the regional insurance fund - the first multi-country risk pool in the world, launched in February last year.

Bahamian Prime Minister and current chair of CARICOM, Hubert Ingraham, expressed his appreciation on behalf of the 16 CCRIF member governments for the contribution.
"The consequences of climate change are severe for Caribbean governments, particularly increasing our exposure to natural disasters and making pre-disaster planning paramount. The additional funds contributed by Ireland will further strengthen the Facility and thus the Caribbean governments it serves," he said.

The Irish Government's Senior Advisor to the Executive Director at the World Bank,

Brendan Ryan said the success of the fund's first year augurs well for its future.

He said the donation was "a signal of the faith the Irish Government has in the Facility and a show of support for the Caribbean governments that have taken a pro-active stance towards disaster risk mitigation by becoming members of the CCRIF."

Last year pledges totaling US$47.7 million were made by Canada, the World Bank, the United Kingdom, France and the Caribbean Development Bank. A further US$19.5 million was raised in the form of a participation fee from each CCRIF member country. The members of the fund are Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

REPORTED BY CARIBBEAN 360 (SIDEBAR LINK)

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