The Eastern Caribbean (EC) dollar remains ‘very strong’ amid the economic fallout from the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) Governor, Timothy Antoine, cited the currency’s strength in a Christmas message.
He highlighted it among ‘many achievements’ for which the ECCB can be justifiably proud.
” Our EC dollar remains very strong. Its current backing in foreign reserves is 97 percent,” Antoine disclosed.
He also said the ECCB recorded its highest profit ever – $63.1 million.
However, the ECCB Governor observed that the Currency Union is experiencing its largest shock, on record.
Antoine said there’s a projected decline of 16.2 per cent this year.
“Our governments continue to grapple with significantly lower revenues while simultaneously expending considerable sums on COVID-19 response measures,” Antoine noted.
“Evidently, this moment calls for shared sacrifice by all stakeholders as we navigate this difficult passage together,” he expressed.
According to Antoine, despite the economic and financial fallout occasioned by the pandemic, countries of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) have responded relatively well.
He said the region is thankful that it only experienced a small number of deaths.
“Looking ahead, we project the ECCU will grow by 5 per cent next year, as Tourism, our dominant export, slowly recovers,” he stated.
Headline photo caption: Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank, Timothy Antoine