Hilaire: Saint Lucia CIP Rigid, Robust – St. Lucia Times

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Minister for Tourism, Investment, Creative Industries, Culture, and Information Dr. Ernest Hilaire contends that Saint Lucia’s Citizenship By Investment Programme (CIP) is viable and sustainable.

CIP initiatives in the region have attracted criticism regarding their security and transparency.

Nevertheless, Hilaire told Monday’s regular pre-Cabinet press briefing that Saint Lucia’s CIP had been designed to undergo a “rigid and robust” test.

He noted that notwithstanding the international sanctions against some countries, Saint Lucia remains on a sustainable trajectory in the broader global village.

“The industry has changed so much, but Saint Lucia has remained a destination that is known for its emphasis on due diligence, and its emphasis on transparency,” Dr. Hilaire declared.

He said the authorities have been pleased with the CIP’s work since its inception.

The minister added that the CIP was formatted to confront the challenges that may arise.

He said that though some changes were made to the original document, the department is “very proud of the work that we have done in that regard, and we continue to be seen as a destination that places extraordinary emphasis on those aspects.”

Minister Hilaire noted that the government is aware of the factors that may prove detrimental to the CIP’s growth.

However, he said, the government implemented a programme to ensure that “the CIP can start delivering directly to the people of Saint Lucia, not simply by raising revenue that goes to the treasury but to start making some direct contributions.”

The minister stated that the CIP had experienced some adjustments.

He told reporters that the upcoming budget presentation would have some “major announcements” regarding project delivery.

Hilaire cited the magnitude of works in other regional territories, including housing projects, roads, bridges, factories, schools, and hospitals.

He said that over the past five years, under the last administration, “We’ve never had that in Saint Lucia.”

The minister said that moving ahead, “we’re going to reach a point in Saint Lucia where we can make a couple of big announcements on projects that will be funded directly.”

“So, in addition to contributing to revenue, you will also see direct projects for the benefit of the people of Saint Lucia,” Dr. Hilaire asserted.