By Caribbean News Global contributor
ROSEAU, Dominica – At the budget address for the 2020/2021 fiscal year, prime minister Roosevelt Skerrit announced that progress has been made towards the construction of the international airport.
“We have completed the necessary property surveys, and Cabinet has approved for the acquisition of 213 properties required for the airport construction, of which 47 are farms. The total market value of these properties is estimated at $50.7 million. Negotiations have been completed with 25 property owners. The government will begin to make payments to the property owners and farmers in August 2020. Geotechnical surveys will be undertaken by September 2020,” prime minister Skerrit explained. Meantime, offering appreciation to the commitment of the People’s Republic of China towards the construction of this important transformational project for Dominica, said: “We are grateful for their solidarity and support.”
Last year, prime minister Skerrit announced that there were multiple proposals and firms from China, India, Dubai, including two multilateral agencies and independent developers in Europe and the Americas, ready to construct the international airport, and a decision was expected [this year] 2020. […] “The international airport will be located in the Wesley constituency, a product that we can be proud of and an airport that we can afford to maintain in pristine condition, and which would benefit frequent regular international airline use,” he said.
Dominica is one of the top 20 destinations of the future – the Nature Isle of the Caribbean with a thriving ecotourism industry. The Nature Isle of the Caribbean has modernised its infrastructure into a 5-star destination funding from by CBI programme. With qualifying investments of at least US$200,000 applicants can also make a one-off contribution of at least US$100,000 to the Economic Diversification Fund.
In addition, the government has been saving US$5 million every month over the past few years from the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) programme specifically for the construction of the new airport.
On June 24, the government of the Commonwealth of Dominica expanded the definition of ‘dependant’ under its Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Programme. The changes allow main applicants to add previously unqualifying adult children, parents, grandparents, and siblings. All dependants aged 16 or over must still pass due diligence checks to qualify.
“We have placed the international airport as priority number one for the government,” prime minister Skerrit said earlier this month. “I am redirecting a lot of state resources in terms of human resources, engineers and surveyors, to the project,” he added.
Prime minister Skerrit explained previously, his long-term vision for Dominica: “The only missing link for the country now is the international airport, with the hotels under construction and opening, with a resurgence in agriculture, agriculture expansion, with our programme to construct a new cruise village and a new port, improvement in our infrastructure [and] health facilities.”