CDB Provides US$16 Million Loan To The Commonwealth of The Bahamas

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Hugh Chase Deputy Director of the Economic Unit in the Ministry of Finance of Bahamas, and temporary Alternate Director of the Board of the Caribbean Development Bank talks with Deidre Clarendon, Officer In Charge, Projects Department The 40yr old College of The Bahamas (COB) will get an institutional and physical makeover now that the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has approved a loan of USD16.18 mn to the Government of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. Among the initiatives for COB are a new Hall of Residence to house 100 students and a new Business Centre. The loan was approved at the two hundred and sixtieth meeting of the Board of Directors of CDB in Barbados on Thursday, March 13, 2014. "The transformation of COB is part of a national strategic goal to enhance the human resource capacity of the country to meet its existing and emerging socio-economic development needs. And, this project is the first phase of a wider transformation programme to support COB's transition to university status by 2015," noted Deidre Clarendon, Officer in Charge, Projects Department, CDB. Along with the Construction of the Hall of Residence and Business Centre, the loan will fund energy efficiency enhancements, and consultancy services for development of the legislative framework for university status and for the development of Enterprise Risk Management and Quality Assurance systems. The project will also undertake the restructuring of the Business Finance and Human Resource Management systems, the establishment of a Research and Innovation Centre and expanded distance education capacity for learners in the Family Islands. "CDB's involvement in the tertiary education sector in the Caribbean is informed by its Education and Training Policy and Strategy. This strategy supports investments for increasing and broadening access, improving efficiency and effectiveness, strengthening institutional capacity and enhancing technological capacity," Clarendon said. The COB project in the Bahamas complements initiatives in tertiary education in the Bank's Borrowing Member Countries such as the establishment of the Caribbean Knowledge and Learning Network and the establishment of a regional accreditation system.

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