The Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. Timothy Harris, has long maintained that the construction sector will be one of the key sectors that will help rebuild the economy of the twin island Federation post COVID-19.
And on Tuesday, March 30, the prime minister saw evidence of this firsthand when he visited the Hillsboro Suites and Residences located at Mattingley Farm, Sunset Reef St. Kitts situated at Palmetto Point, Trinity, and the Royal St. Kitts Hotel where construction work is currently ongoing.
While addressing the media during his tour of Hillsboro Suites and Residences, Prime Minister Harris said he was particularly pleased with the number of young tradesmen employed during the construction phase of the project.
He said, “I was encouraged by the number of persons I saw on site today which means that real people are getting real jobs and real income, and this is part of what is happening. On the opening of this project…we expect to see again another set of persons in more permanent jobs beyond the construction.”
“There are quite a number of young persons here doing jobs in different areas, some doing contracting services, electrical services, plumbing etcetera, and this is what construction does, it creates a multiplier within the economy and our own economic data reflect that construction is the largest contributor of growth in the country and therefore we are always encouraged when we see residential development taking place,” the prime minister added.
Real estate developer and owner of Hillsboro Suites and Residences, Dr. Ken Ballantyne, told Prime Minister Harris and his delegation that, “We are trying to do the best we can to really develop and to present a good product to St. Kitts and Nevis and to show that it can be done if local people take the initiative. We have tried to employ as many people as we possibly can, and I’m happy that you noticed the number of young people that we’ve had here because we try to get the subcontractors to bring in as many young people so they could get an apprenticeship to jobs. As you mentioned electricians are here, plumbers are here, tilers are here, and carpenters.”
Owner of the Royal St. Kitts Hotel, John Zuliani, is taking a similar approach in the construction of a 3,600 square foot high-end villa project.
He noted that, “All of our contractors are local, so there are no foreigners here working just like our hotel operations. I grew up here, I love it here, we have great workers, great staff from the hotel side to our construction side. Even now during COVID we’ve been able to keep over 100 people employed which hasn’t been easy but as my father taught me it’s important to do our part, and right now when things are tough it’s time for all companies to do their part.”
Hillsboro Suites and Residences, Sunset Reef St. Kitts located at Palmetto Point, Trinity, and The Cove by Royal St. Kitts Hotel are all expected to be completed this year.
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