St Lucia Opposition Wants Government to be More Open on CIP

CASTRIES, St Lucia (CMC) – The main opposition St Lucia Labour Party (SLP) on Monday called on Prime Minister Allen Chastanet to be open and transparent with the population regarding the Citizenship by Investment Programme (CIP).

The SLP said it also wanted the new government to provide the public with all the proposed changes to the existing legislative framework for discussion.

In a statement, the SLP said that whilst being the leader of the then opposition United Workers Party (UWP), Chastanet had done much to undermine the CIP, under which foreign investors are granted citizenship of the country for making a significant investment in the socio-economic development of St. Lucia.

“He criticised the programme all over the world even when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other institutions praised the design of the CIP,” the SLP noted, adding that the CIP had only been in operation for 10 months and was severely affected by the public pronouncements of Chastanet.

“Therefore, the Labour Party is of the view that the programme should be allowed to operate for some time before there is any restructuring or relaunch with the existing legislative framework,” the SLP said.

It said it is calling on Prime Minister Chastanet to inform the public how many citizenships have been granted, what are the funds being raised used for, and which new projects have been granted CIP approval status.

The opposition party said it would also like to know what are the deficiencies of the programme and what are the proposed changes and which promoter is recommending changes to the existing legislation.

The SLP said that the public must be involved in the decision-making process as had been the case when the programme was introduced here by the party when in government because of the immense sensitivity of the programme.

Posted: November 2016

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