The occasion was the 4th Annual Consultation on the Economy, hosted by the Ministry of Finance, in the Nevis Island Administration. The one day meeting was hosted at Occasions, located on Pinney’s Road and focused on the topic: “Addressing the Decline in Economic Growth: The Nevis Case”
While speaking during the official opening session of the consultation, Premier of Nevis, Mr. Joseph Parry, told participants that, “This is not the first recession in the world, nor would it be the last”.
Premier Parry said that, at a time when traditional economic powers are facing a period of uncertainty, small developing states such as St. Kitts & Nevis, have had to manage even greater challenges that impact their fragile economies.
He said that in order to survive the new world economic order, change must take place. The consequence for Nevis, said Mr. Parry, rests not in the tourism down-turn, because the implications are far more complicated than that. For instance, explained the leader of the NIA, the increase in oil prices drives up the cost of living and affects the quality and standard of our lives.
Given that Nevis is considered a high-end and high cost island, this provides a serious challenge for the attraction and retention of investment, said Parry.
The premier went on to say that our economic survival is under threat and we cannot wait for a rescue package or hand-outs.
Today’s Budget Consultation was however severely affected by the present weather conditions that prevented some key government representatives, guest speakers, panelists and private sector invitees from St. Kitts, whose travel to Nevis was hampered by the high sea swells that grounded the ferries travelling between the islands.
Amongst those who were not able to travel in time, for the start of the event, was the Prime Minister of St. Kitts & Nevis, Dr. Denzil Douglas, whose address at the Opening Ceremony, had to be delivered by his Attorney General, Mr. Patrice Nisbet.