Debt Service Is A Heavy Load
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
June 14, 2011 (CUOPM)
The National Debt in St. Kitts and Nevis includes the obligations of the Nevis Island Administration as well as that of 13 local statutory entities including that of the closed sugar industry.
Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas responding to questions from the members of the local press corps at a recent joint Press Conference held by the Ministry of Finance and the International Monetary Fund said the government in July 2005 absorbed the debt of the St. Kitts Sugar Manufacturing Corporation (SSMC) along with the sugar lands.
“One of the main reasons that supported the government’s decision to borrow money to develop and improve the infrastructure and build up the country, to the point where it can attract foreign direct investment, was always the notion and the fact that it had assets against which it could borrow. Those assets are still in the possession of the Government,” said Prime Minister Douglas.
He emphasised that when one speaks of the National Debt, it is not only the debt of the Federal (Central) Government but also the Nevis Island Administration (NIA).
“It is the debt of all of the public corporations,” said Prime Minister Douglas.
The Ministry of Finance said the listing of the Public Sector Entities whose financial obligations are part of the National Debt are the Federal Government of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Nevis Island Administration (NIA), the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, the St. Kitts Sugar Manufacturing Corporation (SSMC), the Frigate Bay Development Corporation (FBDC), the La Valle Greens Corporation, the Nevis Air and Sea Ports Authority (NASPA), the Nevis Electricity Company Limited; (NEVLEC), the St. Christopher Air and Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA), the St. Christopher Tourism Authority, ZIZ Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC); National Housing Corporation (NHC), Solid Waste Management Corporation (SWMC), Nevis Tourism Authority, Urban Development Corporation (UDC), Nevis Housing and Land Development Corporation (NHLDC).