In a statement of his own issued on Sunday, 7th November and obtained by MiyVue.com, Skerritt said the comment made by Hamilton in a story carried on a local radio station, on 3rd November, does not surprise him.
“It is well known that Eugene Hamilton and his political allies are conveniently in denial about anything that is good about our country’s economic transformation, including tourism growth,” Skerritt said.
He further added, “If tourism has been declining in St Kitts since 2006, why have the number of taxi and tour operators trebled, the number of vendors doubled, and the number of restaurants more than doubled since then? When we include all aspects of stopover, cruise, and education-tourism, visitor expenditure and its contribution to GDP has practically exploded here in the past 5 years.”
According to Skerritt, “Hamilton probably doesn’t understand the linkages to tourism of the millions of dollars of real estate investments which have taken place since 2006. And he is conveniently blinded to the significant growth of the tourism-related revenues which have been achieved by local real estate agents, banks, lawyers, insurers, building material suppliers, and building contractors since 2006.”
The Tourism Minister in his statement also addressed the radio station for broadcasting the story.
“While I am also not surprised that WINN FM would publish a controversial statement like this without doing any serious research, Hamilton himself should learn from the mistakes of his failed political bedfellows and say as little as possible about what he doesn’t know or understand,” said the Minister.
In conclusion to his statement, Skerritt said, “Tourism is working!”