Where the Citizenship By Investment (CBI) Program-funded projects are concerned, there has been no “slow down” or “stoppage” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
That’s according to Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit who made the statement during his weekly Anou Palay programme on the weekend.
The prime minister said, however, that in the initial months of the pandemic, there was a decline similar to the decline in tax revenue since people couldn’t file applications.
“Everywhere was on lockdown, so there were no government departments open, people couldn’t get their police records…people couldn’t file applications,” Skerrit continued. “The good thing about Dominica is that we have an online portal, so we were able to still get some of the applications uploaded during the shutdown period.”
He said while the CBI program has been impacted to a certain extent, the government has seen a gradual improvement in the numbers because there has been a reopening of the borders in many countries.
He added that this is unlike a hurricane where only Dominica is impacted and the rest of the world is fine.
“We are very hopeful that we will see a continued improvement,” Skerrit stated.
“The good thing about this is that, notwithstanding the decline, all of the projects that we have of the hotels they will never stop moving on.”
He said that Jungle Bay Resort & Spa used the opportunity during the shutdown to complete the property in building additional villas, a new restaurant, an additional swimming pool and other amenities, Hilton/Curio Tranquility Beach Resort in Salisbury ramped up construction, “and they are doing well.”
“The housing never stopped, the Marigot Hospital and Health Centres continued during the pandemic,” Skerrit added.
“Where the CBI funded projects are concerned, we did not see a slow down, we did not see a stoppage up until today,” the prime minister maintained.