An MOU was signed Friday, March 28 for a feasibility study on the damming of the Bog Walk Gorge; this was done at the Offices of the Ministry of Transport, Works & Housing. Signatories to the MOU were Minister Omar Davies representing the Ministry of Transport, Works & Housing; Minister Philip Paulwell representing the Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy & Mining; Minister Robert Pickersgill representing the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change; Mr Zhong Dong Tang and Ambassador Xiaojun Dong both of whom represented China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) which will be undertaking the feasibility study.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Transport, Works & Housing Minister Dr. the Hon. Omar Davies said that this was an important initiative which if successful could go a far way in addressing the water issues of not only the Corporate Area but parts of St. Catherine. He said that there was a possible capacity of some 80 million gallons of water to be supplied from this initiative. “This is aggressive activism and an indication that Jamaica is open for business,” declared Minister Davies. He noted that not only persons seeking water would be benefitted but also farmers whose agricultural sector would also reap positives from the move.
For his part, Minister Paulwell said that he was very pleased that his Ministry was involved citing the fact that this initiative would provide the support for renewable aspect of the energy policy and lead to a diversification of energy sources. He says that the Ministry was spearheading a thrust to move away from liquids and to embrace gas, coal etc.
Also speaking at the Signing ceremony was Minister Robert Pickersgill who noted that the signing of the MOU was an expression of a strategic alliance among CHEC, the Ministry of Transport, Works & Housing, The Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining and the Ministry of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change. He chronicled the relationship between Jamaica and the China noting that that extended some 150 years when the first group of Chinese immigrants arrived in Jamaica. Noting that China is Jamaica’s largest trading partner in the English speaking Caribbean, the Minister said that this new initiative would be mutually beneficial to both countries.
Speaking on behalf of CHEC was Chinese Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Xiaojun Dong who applauded the great relationship enjoyed by both nations. He said that this relationship will continue to grow over the next few years and that CHEC will be playing a great role in that regard.