(PRESS RELEASE) – As the St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce continues to deliver on its pledge to help its members in the South of the Island come to grips with and resolve those issues that “Keep them Up at Night”, on Thursday 5th March, 2020 at the Coconut Bay Hotel, focused attention was paid to the scourge of less than optimum services available to the Business Community and wider citizenry.
Starting with a Luncheon sponsored jointly by Invest Saint Lucia, St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited, the Water and Sewage Company Inc. and Bank of Saint Lucia Limited and Coconut Bay Beach Resort and Spa, Invest Saint Lucia delivered the Key Note Address.
Speaking on behalf of Invest St. Lucia was Ms. Alana Lansiquot-Brice who spoke to the development initiatives being spearheaded by the institution. Reminding the audience of a key focus of the agency which is investment promotion, and as such a number of investment projects have been initiated. Yet, she noted that as a major owner of property in the south and always having a development agenda, a major program of regularizing major unplanned developments – “squatter communities”- was on the way and far advanced. Ms. Delia Didier Nicholas who manages the southern office of Invest, elaborated and provided detailed information on those initiatives as well as the status of the various programmes aimed at impacting positively on the quality of lives of the people in these communities, as well as offering land ownership to those interested.
WASCO and LUCELEC both made presentations on the current status of their service delivery to the south, giving the Business Community context for some of the issues they continue to experience with service provision. WASCO outlined the major water projects they planned which will bring an increased and more consistent water supply to many of the communities in the south. The projects are well advanced and should be completed by the end of 2021.
LUCELEC on the other hand explained that many of the problems that had been experienced in the recent past would soon be behind them as the company had invested much time in conducting rigorous maintenance and system upgrades that will improve reliability and minimize downtime of the system.
A very interactive engagement ensued as presenters took questions from the floor and many specific issues were raised providing good food for thought for all presenters.
The Chamber for its part thanked the presenters for their most insightful presentations and urged the Business Community to hold the Agencies accountable by being prepared to follow-up and monitor the progress on those most valuable projects which have been touted.
The Chamber reminded the attendees of upcoming Chamber events such as the Disaster Risk Reduction: Business Continuity Planning Workshop planned for the 11th and 12th of March at the National Skills Development Centre.
Moreover, the Chamber stressed that the Southern Membership Engagement Program was dependent on the feedback and response of the members and they should feel free to let the Chamber understand, and know the usefulness and effectiveness of the program to them.