Governor John Rankin chaired a Cabinet meeting on May 19 at the Financial Services Commission’s conference room in Pasea. All members were present. During the meeting, Cabinet took the following actions, according to a summary provided by the Cabinet Office.
1. Endorsed the Territorial Oil Spill Contingency Plan for implementation and use in the territory, which will be reviewed by the Cabinet on an annual basis; decided that the Ministry of Natural Resources Labour and Immigration be designated as the competent authority for pollution preparedness, as outlined in the plan for operationalising oil spill contingency planning procedures, in keeping with III Code requirements; and decided that the ministry be also designated as the government authority to receive notification and reports of pollution incidents in keeping with III Code requirements.
2. Reviewed and considered the Civil Registry and Passport Office’s 2020 Annual Report and decided that it be laid on the table at the next convenient sitting of the House of Assembly.
3. Reviewed and accepted the Department of Disaster Management’s 2020 Annual Report; noted the 2020 achievements and the ongoing challenges facing the National Disaster Management Programme; and decided that the report be laid on the table at the next convenient sitting of the HOA.
4. Decided that Oleanvine Maynard be appointed as the managing director of the BVI Ports Authority for a period of two years with effect from March 18 in accordance with the BVI Ports Authority Board’s Resolution No. 37 of 2021; and instructed that the board review her performance annually.
5. Decided that the Hotel Aid Licence for Elizabeth Beach Resort Limited be amended to include an additional list of items for duty free importation in accordance with the Hotel Aid Ordinance (Cap 290).
6. Approved the exemption of duty on poultry equipment valued at $138,000 in accordance with Section 54(3) of the Customs Management and Duties Act, 2010, as amended, and enumerated in Schedule 5 Paragraph 13(4)(b) Poultry Production for a registered farmer, who is in the business of agriculture in accordance with Customs Management and Duties Act, 2010, as amended, Schedule 5, Paragraph 13(1).
7. Approved the National Anti-Money Laundering and Countering of the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Policy and the National AML/CF T Strategy 2021-2023 for territory, which seeks to ensure a high level of compliance with the FATF standards and protect the Virgin Islands’ economy against the potential negative impacts of money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing; agreed that the policy and the strategy be laid on the table in the HOA at the next convenient sitting; and
a. decided that once the policy and the strategy are laid on the table of the House, that the AML/CFT Implementation Unit take the necessary steps to ensure publication of the documents, including on websites of all competent authorities and law enforcement agencies, as well as the official website of the government;
b. decided that the unit be charged with developing an action plan for implementing the strategy and the policy, and monitoring the progress of such implementation; and
c. received a report — “Overview of the CFATF Mutual Evaluation Process” and noted the importance of compliance with the relevant standards, thus leading to a positive evaluation for the territory.
8. Considered the proposed Covid-19 Workplace Testing Policy presented by the Health Emergency Operations Centre and agreed, in principle, based on public health advice, that a testing regime be put in place to screen employees as defined in the presented policy, to reduce the risk of transmission of Covid-19 in the workplace; and decided:
a. that consultations be conducted by the Ministry of Health and Social Development in consultation with the director of human resources, the financial secretary, the attorney general, and the boards of relevant statutory agencies to finalise its ratification and implementation arrangements; and
b. that fully vaccinated people entering the territory from the United States VI, Puerto Rico, or St. Maarten, without overnight stay, be screened on arrival using rapid antigen testing.
This information was provided in a summary Gazetted on June 3.