CDB renews programme of support for IMF-operated Technical Assistance Centre

From the CDB

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada – The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) today announced that it will renew support for a programme designed to help countries in the region strengthen their human and institutional capacity to design and implement policies that promote growth and reduce poverty. The bank’s Board of Directors approved USD$1 million toward the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre (CARTAC) programme until 2022.

CARTAC is one of 10 regional technical assistance centres operated by IMF around the world. In the Caribbean region, the centre has supported capacity-building in public financial management, tax and customs policy and administration. Also, it has contributed to improving the quality of statistics in the real and external sectors to strengthen policy making.

Since 2002, CDB has provided strong support to CARTAC’s operations, acknowledging the pressing need to foster sustainable growth and reduce poverty across our borrowing member countries,” said Dr. Justin Ram, director of economics, CDB. “The bank is pleased to renew its support for the programme’s fifth phase, and looks forward to a continued partnership with IMF and other CARTAC development partners, who share a common goal of addressing skills gaps to improve institutional quality in our region.”

CARTAC has provided assistance with the implementation of value-added tax as a reliable and efficient revenue source in eight regional countries. Also, the centre has supported the development of modern revenue administrations, including large taxpayers units; efforts to cross-match data to enhance tax compliance; and the implementation of the Automated System for Customs Data Acquisition, post-clearance audits, and trade facilitation. All of these initiatives contribute to improved fiscal resilience in the recipient countries.

CARTAC’s objectives include the following:

  • strengthening fiscal administration, with specific attention to tax administration and budget management, in order to promote greater public sector savings;
  • improving the scope, quality and timeliness of economic and social statistics, in order to enhance capacity for analysis, policy formulation, and for investment planning and implementation; and
  • helping to bring accounting, regulatory and supervisory regimes in line with international practices, in order to facilitate continuing integration into a competitive, globalised trading and financial environment.

CARTAC is guided by a steering committee comprising representatives from financial contributors to the centre, namely its 22 member countries; development partners, including CDB; and the IMF.