PM Inks Deal For ALBA Loan For LIAT


PM Browne left Antigua and Barbuda today on a quick visit to Venezuela that saw Antigua and Barbuda being formally inducted into ALBA Bank as a new member, as well as the signing of the Financing Agreement relating to the loan of US$15.8 million for injection into LIAT.


On his arrival PM Browne was met on the tarmac with an honour guard by Vice Minister Yuri Pimentel of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and he was then whisked away to his meetings in downtown Caracas.


The 22ndmeeting of the Ministerial Council and the 72ndmeeting of the Executive Board of ALBA Bank were held in Caracas Venezuela during the morning at the headquarters of the Central Bank of Venezuela.


The Governor of the Central Bank Mr Calixto Ortega welcomed PM Browne and stated how pleased he was that Antigua and Barbuda was becoming the seventh member of ALBA Bank, joining Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Dominica, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Bolivia.


During the meeting, PM Browne formally deposited the instrument that allowed Antigua and Barbuda to join the Bank, and he expressed his satisfaction at the good financial position of the Bank which would, in his view , engender trust and confidence.

Both St Vincent and the Grenadines and Dominica, in offering their congratulations, indicated that they fully supported the ‘bold move’ by Antigua and Barbuda to join the Bank.


ALBA Bank was established in 2005 as the brainchild of former President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez Frias, and the former President of Cuba, Fidel Castro, and was envisioned as a regional development bank that would provide resources to fill the development needs of the countries of the region.


In signing the Financing Agreement, PM Browne indicated that although the Government of Antigua and Barbuda was assuming the financial liability, in fact the loan injection into LIAT would benefit the entire region that LIAT served.


‘LIAT is our infrastructure that links our scattered islands into a single economic space,’ Mr Browne said, ‘and it breathes oxygen into our tourism industry.’


After the meetings at the Central Bank, the Prime Minister had a bilateral meeting with the President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro Moros in the Miraflores Palace.


Both leaders reviewed the situation in Latin America and the Caribbean and agreed to work more closely together to achieve the goals of sustainable development in the region. Accompanying President Maduro in the meeting was Vice President Delcy Rodriguez; minister of foreign affairs Jorge Arreaza; and Vice Minister in the ministry of foreign affairs and chairman of the Executive Board of ALBA Bank Raul Li Causi.



  1. Congratulations. Comrade Fidel and Comrade Chavez would be proud of this great leap forward in socialist solidarity. Comrade Prime Minister Gaston is to be commended. In case anyone hasn’t noticed, the “great” western powers (USA etc.) are paying very little attention to us these days. This is another example of solid progressive and social democrat-labour government in our little paradise. Forward Ever. Backward Never. The government of Antigua is to be commended again.

  2. CErmle: I hope you would not have to band your belly.When the time comes.To pay back all of those loans being accrued by this Administration.I have heard from the horses mouth,Gaston Browne.He did say he is going to borrow the Nation out of debt.Do you remember those words.Think about them and laugh now.Because you a go bawl soon.

  3. You know at first I doubted the wisdom of borrowing monies from the Alba Bank. especially when it was mentioned in US Dollars. Cause I know payments to Venezuela over the US banking system is prohibited. I thought OK Gaston will pay them in Bit Coins. But when I listened to the Brown and Brown show today I learned from the PM that this is an EC Dollar loan. You see Chavez was smart and had foreseen that the US would one day have sanctions against his government. By establishing the ALBA Bank he ensured that he was independent from the US banking system. The problem was to get all the countries that were part of the ALBA group to fund the bank. And for this the condition of the PDV Agreement was that monies owed to Venezuela for the Oil be placed with ALBA Bank. The sad part was that many countries defaulted and the bank in my opinion was not capitalize as it should. But Venezuela has plenty monies outstanding in receivables from the Caribbean countries that had signed unto the deal. What I therefore understand is that our too smart PM is making use of these EC Dollars which are just sitting there doing nothing. And by doing so he is not violating US sanctions and as a member of ALBA he is just lending monies the country has paid in to he bank. And remember the gift we already got from Maduro where he wrote off some $200 million dollars from our debt to Venezuela. The ALBA bank was to be the IMF/ WorldBank of the ALBA Group. So that they never had to knock on the door of these vulture organizations that always seem to make things eve worst for the country they enter into an agreement with. This PM of ours always think outside the box and is way ahead of many around the region and is certainly no match for the opposition here at home. Antigua must be real proud and fortunate to have this man at our helm. No matter what the problem he will find a solution. That is why he says his is a Can Do government. Therefore I Salute you Dr. Gaston Browne. Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda. Soon to be Knighted. SIR Right Honorable Dr. Gaston Browne

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