Jamaica owes the bauxite company J$2.5bn ($29.5M) under a forward sale arrangement negotiated in 2005, under which the country got funds upfront as a loan to be repaid in 10-year supply contracts at a fixed price.

The EU said it has already approved €17M of budgetary assistance for Jamaica this fiscal year, to replace some of the losses of export earnings that resulted from the fallout of the bauxite sector last year, but acknowledged that the challenges might be larger than the grant funding provided.

The EU said it would communicate the decision on whether the progamme can be tapped to help Jamaica as soon as a decision is made.

Source Jamaica Gleaner