More money to assist Belize with Covid relief is underway; that is according to the Prime Minister. The announcement came when Love News asked for a current report on where Belize is regarding available funding and the money that has been spent so far. While the Prime Minister did not have the exact figure he assured residents that they will continue to expand on the programs by sourcing money from lending agents. Additionally, these finances will continue to assist students and those in the agricultural sector.
Rt.Hon Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: “We have been able to find a great deal of money that’s either already here or just about to come to deal with things like the expansion and extension of the food packages program, to deal with the unemployment relief situation. The Minister has been able to persuade the IDB to do some reprogramming so that apart from the monies that he will find out of his own resources for the purchase of the devices for students there will be more money coming in next month from the IDB. So I’m sorry I would have to go program by program and get the statistics for you to tell you what has been spent but what I can say is that there is absolutely no risk of this government, your government, running out of funds to finance these core essential programs. We might be in danger of running out of funds to pay public officers and we’ll make sure it doesn’t happen but that is extreme pressure and to pay the continuing operating expenses of government but to help agriculture the program is all signed off on now with the World Bank and by next week we should start to see some disbursements to small farmers in particularly women small farmers $8 million for that- SIF will help to handle that. And so again there can be no fooling around. We stick to our commitment that the disbursement of funds in terms of these core programs to assist our people will be done in a completely non partisan fashion. That money is coming , the additional money for Mrs.Alpuche’s Ministry’s food roll out program. The Augmentation of the Boost we’re in conversation with CABEI for a new line of funding for $25 million USD that part of which will be put into the unemployment relief program – phase two has started I’m not so sure how fast it’s moving but the monies are there and the rest of which will go to augment the Boost program. As it is we have enough monies to increase the recipients of Boost, to increase the amount of monies that each family will get through to the month of February next year. Well CABEI is going to help us so that there will be an even further extension.”