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St. Kitts-Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce Reports 15.2 Percent Economic Decline at Annual General Meeting

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by Kevon Browne

St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN) The St. Kitts- Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce its annual AGM on Thursday, February 25, 2021, in the Conference Room of the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Unions (CCCU).

The main order of business was the presentation of the Auditors Report and the Financial Statements for the financial year ended December 2020.

The theme for the meeting was “Collaborating for Success”, which reflects the approach taken by the CIC to forge greater relationships with members, non-members and the Government and Public Sector in order to work towards one goal of protecting not only the health of the nation but providing sound business advice and measures to help businesses to reopen and remain open despite the sluggish economic climate.

President of SKNCIC, Mrs. Giselle Matthews informed the meeting that according to the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), the Federation’s Economy has been severely impacted and expected to decline by 15.2 percent in 2020. The ECCB has reported that a partial recovery is anticipated in 2021, but it will not return the economy to where it was pre-Covid-19.

Additionally, the Government’s Fiscal balance deteriorated drastically in 2020 as revenue loss continued to decline with the closure of the borders in March 2020, the shutdown of the Tourism Sector which accounts for over 28% of GDP as a result of international travel restrictions, and adherence to national public health protocols.

The President stated “despite the impact of Covid-19 on our businesses, we will continue to work responsibly and smartly and be vigilant.in the process. 2020 [was] a challenging year, but I am confident as we continue to collaborate between our newly formed Private Sector Liaison Committee and Public Sector through the Covid-19 Task Force we will all succeed in the end.

At the AGM, Elections for the Board of Directors for 2021 to 2022 were held with the re-election of Matthews as President and Mrs. Natalie Kelsick-Marshall as Vice President.

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