CIP to be transparent, well-regulated and must boost government revenues

The Chairman of the Board of the Citizenship by Investment Dr. Ernest Hilaire says that St. Lucia’s CIP will be transparent and honest,learn the confidence of stakeholders and friendly
governments and will help increase government revenue.

Dr. Hilaire who was at the time addressing the 131st Annual General Meeting of the Chamber of Commerce identified the significant benefits of increases in government revenue, job creation especially in the construction and hospitality sectors, earnings for professionals Dr. Ernest Hilaire – Chairman of Board of Citizenship by Investment Programme in the processing of applications, enhanced tourism arrivals, stronger brand identify and destination profiling and greater support for charities.

The former St. Lucia High Commissioner to London also addressed concerns about questionable
investors gaining St. Lucian passports, noting that all applications will be subject to a rigid due diligence processes which include the scrutiny of international due diligence firms.

Dr. Hilaire said staff of the CIP unit will from time to time undertake appropriate briefings and testing to ensure they have not been compromised. Agents who repeated submit cases which have been
rejected will not have their licenses renewed.

To qualify CIP applicants must have a net worth of US $3 million. There is a limit of 500 applications to be considered annually.

The CIP Chairman says the programme will be consistent with national priorities, offer a menu of
options for investment and advise on suggested areas of economic activity in line with development
needs.

Areas of national priorities are reflected in the regulations. The real estate option has two approved areas of activity – high-end branded hotels and high-end boutique properties. Economic citizens will be expected to purchase government bonds. Dr. Hilaire informed the Chamber members that the CIP is open to ideas and proposals for other areas not included in the Regulations.

The CIP Act and Regulations stipulates that the responsible Minister table an annual report in
Parliament giving details of the programme. It also calls for a report detailing how monies placed in the National Economic Fund are used.

Dr. Hilaire promised the business community that “Our reputation will be our strongest marketing
tool”.

Source: Caribbean Business Report

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