Opposition Doubtful TEF Projects will Receive Funding

The Opposition is expressing doubts about whether projects budgeted for under the Tourism Enhancement Fund, TEF, will be financed.

This, in the wake of strong objections from some players in the tourism industry to plans to put money earmarked for the TEF and other public bodies into the Consolidated Fund.

Last week, State Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Fayval Williams, said these bodies will submit a budget for approval as is customary.

She said the surplus would then remain with the central government.

Opposition Spokesman on Finance, Dr. Peter Phillips, says there’s no guarantee tourism projects will be funded when money from the TEF is redirected to the central government.

And, the Opposition Spokesperson on Tourism, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, says the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association will not have access to resources from the TEF for product development under the proposed changes.

He says this could have a negative effect on the country’s tourism product.

Meanwhile, Dr. Phillips says the government should’ve approached the imposition of its latest tax package differently.