Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): The investment climate in St. Kitts and Nevis is improving according to key indicators across multiple sectors.
At his monthly press conference on Tuesday (March 23, 2021), Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris highlighted some of these areas where progress is evident as the twin-island Federation seeks to rebound from the local economic challenges caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“The statistics reveal that 183 Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) have been approved so far for 2021 compared to 143 licenses issued in 2020, up 28 percent for the comparative period,” Dr. Harris stated.
The government will continue to offer financial support to enhance the survivability of SMEs. The prime minister announced that an additional $5 million will be made available at the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis to lend to businesses with viable plans. The support was a Budgetary commitment for the 2021 financial year. The funds will be transferred later this year.
Prime Minister Harris also pointed to positive developments in the construction sector.
He noted that several hotel properties including Trinity Sunset Shores, Seaview Hotel, and Hillsborough Suites Hotel are expected to be completed this year.
When officially opened, these present “opportunities for permanent jobs, real incomes and increasing our hotel stock to more competitive levels,” Dr. Harris outlined.
Construction, which is a key driver of the economy, is also ongoing for various projects such as the TDC Dewars Residential Middle-Income Project, and a luxury villa development project at the Royal St. Kitts Hotel, as well as the rehabilitation projects for the island main road, and Old Road, Bay Road.
Two additional public sector capital projects are also scheduled to begin this year. These are a modern correctional facility at Estridge, and the state-of-the-art Basseterre High School at Ponds Pasture.
“I am pleased that we are seeing some good signs of recovery,” Dr. Harris said. “More needs to happen but, we are grateful for these positive developments.”