Nevis Premier – Joseph Parry
May 27, 2008
Premier and Minister of Finance in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) Hon. Joseph Parry, told the people of Nevis that the Federal Government through Prime Minister Hon. Denzil Douglas, had agreed to guarantee a number of outstanding important projects. Among them was the Kuwaiti funded expansion of Nevis’ International Airport.
In a televised report on NTV Channel 8, on May 26, 2008, Mr. Parry said the Kuwaiti government had indicated interest in providing financing for the project, on condition of the Federal government’s blessings.
“Last year I reported that the Kuwaiti government had indicated their interest in the expansion of the airport, that they had approved the project in principal. Now I am reporting, that the Kuwaiti government has said to the Federal government if the project has its support the Kuwaiti government will accept the project and move forward with it.
“A fax was sent to Prime Minister Douglas in that regard and a copy was sent to me and it was agreed, without any struggle, that the Federal government not only supports the project but will guarantee the project and so that project is approved. We only have from the Ministry of Finance in Nevis, to submit the project to the Federal government for it to be sent on to the Kuwaitis,” he said.
According to Mr. Parry, Prime Minister Douglas gave the NIA his blessings during a meeting in St. Kitts on May 21, 2008. He was accompanied by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance on Nevis Mr. Laurie Lawrence and Cabinet Secretary Mr. Ashley Farrell.
He also said that a number of ongoing projects on Nevis were discussed. In relation to the $25million road project from Market Shop to the St. James Anglican Church, which was partly funded by the Bank of Nevis, the Premier received approval to have the loan refinanced. He said it would allow the NIA to access cheaper financing at a lesser cost.
In addition, Premier Parry said, Prime Minister Douglas agreed to an additional $35million which would be used to continue some projects until other financing was in place.
“Projects like the Fire Services Department, a fire truck for the airport, ambulance for the hospital and a number of other such projects.
“[At] the Charlestown Secondary School (CSS), we have to do an extension of the staff room [and] we have to do four other classrooms. So we are in a position to move forward in the next few months so that by the end of this year, our fire services would be much stronger, the Charlestown Secondary School teachers would be more comfortable and the children would be more comfortable,” he said.
Notwithstanding, Mr. Parry indicated too that a project was given to the NIA for the extension and modernisation of the CSS. It had since been presented to the government of Trinidad and Tobago and said he expected the project would be approved in due course.
The Premier said other matters that were addressed included funds from Cable and Wireless shares which were owned by the Federal government but had been bought over by Cable and Wireless.
“We spoke about matters to do with funds from Cable and Wireless. Cable and Wireless had bought out the shares of the government of St. Kitts and Nevis and we have agreed between the Federal government and the Nevis Island government that the funds would be shared.
“The matter now is to determine at what rate that matter should be discussed and determined in a matter of days rather than weeks and that is one of the agreements that we had last week,” he said.
Also the issue of the modification of the existing Companies Act was discussed and it was agreed that companies based in St. Kitts who conducted business in Nevis would pay their corporate taxes in Nevis while those based in Nevis and operated in St. Kitts would pay their corporate taxes in St. Kitts.
Mr. Parry said the issue had been on that had been argued over for many years but the matter had been finally resolved.