Government Dialogues With Private Sector On Economic Recovery

Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 09, 2021 (SKNIS): Senior officials from the public sector and the private sector in St. Kitts and Nevis came together on Thursday (April 08, 2021) for an important dialogue on “The Nation’s Recovery from the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic.”

The Federal Financial Secretary, Hilary Hazel, delivered welcome remarks at the event hosted at the Royal St. Kitts Hotel. She stated that the recipe for growth and recovery of the economy must include investments that will “help us to build forward, better.”

Mrs. Hazel noted that there are a number of investment gaps that existed before the COVID-19 pandemic that will need to be addressed to build resilience in the economy. To achieve this, several reforms were outlined.

“Some of the reforms that I speak of include building a nation of good corporate citizens; improving the business climate; looking at the education and health sector reforms; and labour market issues including pension reforms,” the financial secretary said. “Critical to the recovery as well, is how we will determine how best to use the investments made by the government to unlock even bigger investments in the national economy.”

Mrs Hazel added that the projected economic growth for 2021 was five percent.

“How do we achieve that?” she questioned. “Certainly, it cannot be public alone, and it cannot either be the private sector alone. We are in the same boat, and so we have to commit to working together.”

During the four hour meeting, the participants were updated on the latest local efforts to manage COVID-19, which included the Roll Up to Roll Out Vaccination Programme. The update was provided by the Ministry of Health.

Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Dr. The Honourable Timothy Harris also shared remarks and engaged in a frank dialogue with the “Captains of Industry” during the discussion.

Giselle Matthews, President of St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce, noted that the membership remains committed to the national effort to rebuild the economy.

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