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HomeCBI ProgramsCaribbeanSt Lucia not opposed to Caribbean CIP document

St Lucia not opposed to Caribbean CIP document

  Caribbean Countries’ CBI prime ministers proceed with CNG’s insight

– “Saint Lucia is fully supportive of the agreement signed by the OECS CIP countries. In fact, we have implemented all but one provision. Some of the provisions are already provided for by the laws of Saint Lucia; and,

– “On the matter of pricing, we have contractual arrangements in place which will have to be observed or government will face potential legal action

– “We hope to sign the Memorandum of Agreement once it becomes possible. I have a responsibility to protect our mission of ‘Putting People First.’”

“I will provide a comprehensive explanation of the future of the Citizenship by Investment Programme, in the policy statement on April 23, 2024. ~ Prime Minister Philip Pierre.

By Caribbean News Global fav

TORONTO / USA / LONDON – Saint Lucia will sign the Citizenship by Investment Programme (CBIP), Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), previously signed on 20 March 2024 by the prime ministers of Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada and Saint Kitts and Nevis, says a high-level personnel familiar with the matter.

“Saint Lucia’s signature to the CBIP-MOA later this month (April 2024) in the first instance and/or “once it becomes possible” will comply with 30 June 2024 deadline to help strengthen integration, enhance integrity, security and efficiency, address partners’ concerns to international standards and best practices, and deepen the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), jurisdictions,” said the Saint Lucian authority.

On January 29, 2024, Caribbean News Global (CNG) article entitled ‘ Caribbean Countries’ CBI are yet again under EU scrutiny’ advised:

“The five Caribbean CBI countries that are committed to CBI in the region should organize as a bloc (syndicate, alliance) – Caribbean CBI countries – focused on the collective dimensions, benefits, risk factors and prospects for growth and development.

“The results may very well provide the much-needed highly productive and mutually beneficial engagements that deliver safeguards to the prosperity of Caribbean CBI countries.”

On, or before June 30, 2024, “The parties agree to increase and harmonize the minimum investment threshold of the CBIPs to an investment sum of US$200,000 and a regional competent authority established or identified to set standards in accordance with international requirements and best practices and to regulate the programs.”

The CBIP-MOA outlines:

  • Exchange of best practices and due diligence processes;
  • Set a minimum threshold of USD200,000 and this threshold must represent the actual amount of funds received;
  • Sharing information on applicants;
  • Enhance transparency by disclosing funds;
  • Conduct independent financial and operational audits;
  • Establish regional authority to set regional standards;
  • Set common standards for communication and promotion;
  • Regulate agents; and,
  • Conduct joint training programmes and capacity-building initiatives for CBI administrations.

– Related: Memorandum-of-Agreement-CBIP-20-March-2024

The CBIP-MOA follows European Union officials visit to Dominica on 24 January 2024 with the OECS countries to discuss the Caribbean CBIPs.

Caribbean Countries’ CBI are yet again under EU scrutiny

The CBIP-MOA also supplements the six principles agreed upon between Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Saint Lucia on 25 February 2023, at the US-Caribbean roundtable deliberating the challenges faced by Caribbean CBI programmes and discussed opportunities that would enable the programmes to thrive among OECS Member States.

St Lucia stands-out

Saint Lucia continues to be under scrutiny for several reasons, including, but not limited to not partaking in the virtual signing ceremony to the CBIP-MOA.

In preparation for the 2024/2025 budget Prime Minister Philip Pierre, said:

I believe that the best way to do so is through collective and coordinated regional action. As it relates to the Citizenship by Investment Programme [CIP], Saint Lucia is fully supportive of the agreement signed by the OECS CIP countries.

“In fact, we have implemented all but one provision. Some of the provisions are already provided for by the laws of Saint Lucia.

“On the matter of pricing, we have contractual arrangements in place which will have to be observed or government will face potential legal action.

“We hope to sign the Memorandum of Agreement once it becomes possible. I have a responsibility to protect our mission of ‘Putting People First.’”

Prime Minister Pierre has advised that in the policy statement on April 23, 2024, followed by the debate on April 25 and April 26, 2024:

“I will provide a comprehensive explanation of the future of the Citizenship by Investment Programme, and audited financial statements will be made available to the House as stipulated by law.”

CBI financing

Caribbean CBI countries rely heavily on the revenue generated to obtain foreign direct investments, social and economic development, and to service debt.

CBI contributed to the economy of Saint Lucia $121 million in 2023/2024, distributed in part as revenue, and is used to fund security, healthcare, social development, and infrastructure development, per the prime minister’s budget speech. The 2024/2025 projected revenue contributing directly to revenue is scheduled at $75 million.

Grenada’s Citizenship by Investment Unit (CBI) recently rebranded to the Investment Migration Agency of Grenada. According to Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell, CBI earned the country EC$456 million in 2023:

“We see the migration investment industry as any other financial services industry that is available to mankind to be able to maximise the benefit of being a global citizen.”

Pushing boundaries

Moving forward, significant conversations will play out. Caribbean leaders may push boundaries connected to CBI output, revenue generation, immigration/migration to make progress on their country-wide financial and development challenges.

The opportunity also provides for a greater thought process and the ratification of ideas and solutions directed at each Caribbean CBI country. The prospects lie for a better value chain that directs opportunities for trade, financial services, industry, AI, health care, a digital strategy, regional security, etc, towards specialisation and to better manage what defines the region’s unique features.

The Caribbean region ought not to compete with itself in an enclave that struggles for development capital, financing, economy of scale, the hassle of doing business and a low population ratio.

Long-term diplomatic relations, security implications, international funding and grant receipts will continue to pose challenges. A strategic approach is necessary to maintain the OECS region’s integrity and value chain.

The legal effect of the Memorandum-of-Agreement-CBIP-20-March-2024 reads:

“This MOA is a statement of intent and does not create legal obligations under international and domestic law. It does not constitute a legally binding agreement and is not enforceable in any court of law.”

@GlobalCaribbean  fav

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