The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) has paid out a total of $12.8 million to the governments of Barbados, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines following the passage of Tropical Storm Tomas, which passed through the islands recently.
CCRIF released to each country 50 percent of their payouts on Nov. 7, seven days after the storm’s passage – well before the end of the customary 14-day waiting period – to facilitate requests from the three countries.
Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines Ralph Gonsalves said this early payment would facilitate “urgent restoration of services and clearing of the affected areas.”
The total payouts for the three countries were as follows: Barbados $8,560.247; St. Lucia $3,241.613 and St. Vincent and the Grenadines $1,090.38.
These three countries – along with 13 other Caribbean nations – have had catastrophe insurance for hurricanes and earthquakes with the CCRIF since the inception of the facility in 2007.
CCRIF was formed at CARICOM’s request for a cost-effective risk transfer program for member governments, and the insurance policies now form part of these countries’ disaster risk management framework.
The specific payout totals are based on the level of coverage a country has.
Tropical Storm Tomas resulted in significant damage to the three islands, with St. Lucia officials reporting that Tomas was “the worst in St. Lucia’s history, destroying the island’s banana crop.”
Across the three islands, roads and houses were damaged, power lines downed and the agriculture sector heavily impacted.