St Lucia opposition pledges to review all economic citizenships granted under new rules
CASTRIES - The opposition St Lucia Labour Party (SLP) has announced it will review every economic citizenship granted by the ruling United Workers Party (UWP) under new citizenship by investment programme (CIP) rules recently promulgated by Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, apparently to accommodate a new development project agreement signed with Chinese-backed Desert Star Holdings (DSH).
The SLP expressed its “deepest concern” with the actions of the Chastanet administration, which it said serves to undermine the integrity and reputation of the CIP.
“The Labour Party believes that the removal of the US$3 million net worth, the cheapening of the level of donation as a qualifying investment and the removal of the annual limit of 500 applications and the guarantee of processing all Desert Star Holdings (DSH) applicants in 35 days should all be reconsidered for the sake of the reputation of Saint Lucia,” the SLP said in a statement, adding, “These changes will undoubtedly undermine the national security safeguards which were embedded in the setting up of the CIP.”
The SLP noted that DSH is a controversial development proposed for the southern community of Vieux Fort, including a race track covering over 700 acres. The development has generated national condemnation because of the terms of the agreement, which includes leasing land at $1 per acre for 99 years.
“The SLP wishes to inform that a Labour Party government will review every citizenship granted by the UWP under these new requirements. The Labour Party believes that the CIP should be presented as a premium, selective and highly valued option and not sold as the cheapest option available to any and everybody,” the press release concluded.