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US$36 MILLION FOR HEALTH SYSTEM.

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) on May 6 announced approval of a US$36 million soft loan to Honduras to support the reform of the Secretariat of Health, and expand access to health services for low-income groups, women and children. A pilot project for hospital reform will include management restructuring and reinforced autonomy at six hospitals. Three hospitals will be rehabilitated. Details: 202-623-1000. MORE GOVT. AID FOR AIR JAMAICA. The Government has written off a US$115 million Air Jamaica debt incurred prior to January 1998 and is seeking to raise US$70 million for the airline, CANA reported on April 21, citing an article in The Gleaner newspaper: . Air Jamaica President Christopher Zacca reportedly confirmed that a deal to help put the airline back on its feet had been struck and he hoped to have further "positive news" within days. Earlier this year, news broke that the Government would be putting up US$70 million in working capital along with US$10 million provided by private investors led by airline chairman Gordon "Butch" Stewart. Recently, the opposition spokesman on transport suggested in Parliament that the airline was in danger of being grounded because funding promised by the Government was not forthcoming; . Air Jamaica, even as it has expanded and modernized its service since privatization three years ago, has incurred heavy losses. Airline executives say that a Category II rating imposed on the airline by the U.S. Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) for more than a year, cost the airline more than US$150 million. The downgrade limited the airline in its attempts to open new routes and fly new aircraft into the U.S. Air Jamaica was forced to keep new aircraft grounded, keep old, hard-to-maintain aircraft flying and turn to expensive wet leases to service some North American routes.
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Publication:Caribbean Update
Article Type:Article
Geographic Code:2HOND
Date:Jun 1, 1998
Words:301
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