PM Roosevelt Skerrit seeks to partner with diasporans with practical and feasible development ideas. He said the government is ready to work with anyone with ideas that can change the lives of people around in Dominica. He is asking for the contribution of Dominicans abroad towards making Dominica great through partnership with the government for easy project takeoff.
“As little as it is, what is your contribution? I’m saying to you in the diaspora that if you have a practical and feasible proposal to present to us, we are prepared to partner with you,” Skerrit said.
The prime minister said there are hundreds of developmental opportunities in agriculture, residential housing, hotels and lodging, tourism, greenhouse technology, hydroponics, internet tech, and food packaging among others.
“You can partner with Dominica Social Security for their lands at Warner to build residences to sell to the diaspora; we can partner with you on that,” he said. “We have lands in Cotton Hill that can be used for exquisite residential housing. There is number of opportunities, it is up to us to look at the country on a positive slant; not to look at the glass half-empty, but to say how can I get the other half to the brim?”
In the process of encouraging Dominican nationals within and outside the island to contribute meaningfully to the growth and development of the nation, the prime minister cited a couple instances where the government has partnered with entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.
Skerrit said Sam Raphael submitted a proposal for the rebuilding of Jungle Bay Villas and the government collaborated with him to turn the suggestion into a profitable reality. He said Jungle Bay Villas now employs 60 people and provides 30 eco-friendly rooms for lodging; and before the end of the year, the number of rooms will increase to 50 with number of employees totalling 150.
Skerrit also gave the example of Tranquility Beach Resort where the entrepreneur approached the Ministry of Finance for partnership. He said the young constructed his hotel and other properties in Anguilla through partnership with the Dominican government and now employs about 70 Dominicans in his business.
“A young man from River Street went to Anguilla and was able to use his talents and build himself up to be one of the leading hoteliers and property owners in Anguilla,” Skerrit revealed. “He came to us with a proposal and we have partnered with him and the hotel is now under construction. He has employed 60-70 Dominican onsite in Grand Savanne to build this hotel.”
Meanwhile, the government will be meeting with diasporans visiting the island on Thursday for the Annual Diaspora Forum conference at Jungle Bay Villas to discuss business partnerships and the way forward for the country. In a related development, Minister for Education Petter St. Jean has called on all active youths in the country to contribute meaningful ideas to solving some of the island’s problems so that their own economic future can be better insured in the country. He made the call at the Annual Northern District Youth Rally at Benjamin’s Park in Portsmouth.
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