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PM says Business Insider “wrong” to classify St. Lucia as fifth slowest economy

By Office of the Prime Minister

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Left to right: Dr Kenny Anthony and Allen Chastanet.

PRESS RELEASE – Prime Minister and Minister for Finance and Economic Affairs, Hon. Dr Kenny D. Anthony, has noted the public discussion on a Business Insider Report, following a news item on “St. Lucia News Online” and subsequent reaction by the Leader of the United Workers Party, Mr. Allen Chastanet.

On the surface, any knowledgeable and intelligent individual would question this report before endorsing it wholeheartedly like Allen Chastanet did.

Without thinking, without any care or concern for this island and its people, solely with the intention of injuring the government, Allen Chastanet jumped into the fray.

The article states that “Saint Lucia’s tourism-dependent economy never fully recovered after tourism drastically slowed following the financial crisis. (Even airlines slashed the number of flights there).” On the contrary, Saint Lucia’s tourism figures have grown consistently over the last three years, registering record arrivals each quarter. Airlift has also increased. In 2013, Saint Lucia welcomed 317, 000 stay over visitors. This was a record year. In 2014 that record was surpassed with total stay over visitor arrivals estimated at 338,158; a 6% increase from 2013. So far 2015 is showing significant growth. At the end of the first quarter, Saint Lucia recorded a 6.4% growth over the same period last year.

How then can it be accurate to state “tourism drastically slowed following the financial crisis?”

Again, Allen Chastanet should have known better than to run with the comments on airlift, given his history in the tourism sector. Saint Lucia has more airlift and achieved this at a fraction of the cost incurred when Chastanet was Minister for Tourism. The Review of the Economy 2014, on page 18 states that,

“Jet Blue and Delta both introduced new services from Boston in November and New York (JFK) in December respectively in addition to increased seats during the year, particularly during the summer when Jet Blue serviced an additional flight from JFK. Service from New Jersey on United Airlines was also retained throughout the year.

Both Canadian and UK markets rebounded in 2014, recording a 15.0 and 4.4 percent increase in arrivals respectively. The Canadian market registered the highest arrivals to date with 41,388 visitors attributed mainly to increased airlift from West Jet, Air Canada and Sunwing.

The UK market maintained its market share of 22.0 percent with 73,960 visitors, reflecting a full year’s service from the introduction of Thomas Cook in November of 2013 and increased service from British Airways and Virgin Atlantic.”

Further, it is now clear that the figures attributed to the World Bank are incorrect and outdated. The facts clearly show that the Business Insider is wrong to classify Saint Lucia as the fifth slowest growing economy in the world.

The GDP growth figures quoted are estimates that are not based on official information or on real figures recorded over the last three years.

Obviously, if old figures are compared to updated figures, the outcome will be flawed. If Mr. Chastanet wishes to comment on economic issues, for which, it is now emerging that he may not be academically qualified, he should do so on the basis of verifiable facts.

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This article was posted in its entirety as received by stlucianewsonline.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

55 comments

  1. Kenny the liar. Guy Joseph good for yoll. Private banks publish reports saying that st lucias economy is the weakest in the Caribbean as well a other agencies and you are denying it. Time to go you slave driver and opressor Kenny and company. We sick of your nasty politicking.

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  2. Legalize it!!! .....and you will see economic activity

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  3. Kenny don't let the door hit your ass on the way out!!!..... UWP, come again, cause I eh see the next pm within you guys yet!!! ...... I think we saint Lucian's need to stop talking and act we need to make our own government And stop all that yellow and red party thing. We need to individually select our ministers and appoint them ourselves!

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  4. Someone please explain to this slow-thinking political actor, that unless the communication is directed ONLY to his en rouge dummies, who have given up all responsibility to think for themselves, he is free to choose his own opinion, but NOT his own facts.

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  5. Change is needed.

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  6. Saint Lucians are a really passionate and patriotic people online. Its a shame that passion scarcely filters into the real world where everybody playin no mind.

    Anyways onto business, The article was written by a written by a recent economics graduate with little to no context, using crude financial modeling as opposed to a more accurate econometric method( theres no shortage of them).

    Any economist worth his salt will tell you GDP is a rough approximation of economic activity and does not clearly represent whats actually happening. Countries like Saint Vincent which have relatively big underground markets cant give a fair picture of thier economy using GDP.

    My point is folks you cant use this article as law to spread panic. The ENTIRE region performing very poorly. some Countries in the caribbean have multiple banks on the verge of Defaulting.

    Our tourism sector is growing, our central bank is STRONG with a mountain of foreign exchange reserves. Our debt to GDP ratio is manageable. Calm down.
    Granted there are some serious structural problems to be addressed, its a caribbean thing not a st.lucian thing.

    FYI this isnt politically biased, i dont particularly like either party. Some argue our politicians are a reflection of our society, if that is true, we are truly lost.

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  7. my people of st.lucia its time to rise against this corrupt this dictator need to go we need a change we dont want slp nor uwp we want a change freedom is the cry of the people stand up my people this is the time god help those who help themselves rise my people Revolution... is the only solution...words of the book of life

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  8. Poor Doctor Ken Knee.....

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  9. in my opinion us st lucians are the ones who mainly contribute to things being bad here. we complain that the government has no fore sight or vision but what are we doing as a nation. look our people. so laid back, ignorant, side tracked by every sound of controversy. you have children raising children. no family morals and good principle. every downfall we blame it on government but fail to realize the lack of pride as a nation. LUCIANS WAKE UP. we blame the banks for making it hard to obtain a loan but who can blame them. the typical local small business or micro enterprise owner starts to live above their means as soon as they get a few dollars. wants to drive the latest vehicle. build a massive house he cant maintain. show ppl that he made it but behind the curtains the banks are suffering with unpaid loans. be fore we complain about the government and the need for change, they change must first start with us.

    IN THE LAND OF THE BLIND THE ONE EYED MAN IS KING... LUCIANS OPEN YOUR EYES...

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  10. Aa I observed all the comments. There seems to be an operative of the SLP clicking thumbs down on every comment which criticizes Kenny. All persons can check the information and St. Lucia is among the slowest growing economies. I can forward to the hacks a number of reports and data all indicating such. People wake up smell the coffee, Kenny will ensure all average man in Lucia suffer.

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  11. Our PM did not even know that our BA flight was shared with Trinidad. The last time he travel from Brussels on BA, he was excited to see the flight full, not knowing that only about 1/3 of the passengers disembarked at Hewanorra Airport. The other 2/3 went to Trinidad.

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  12. What is 6% in tourism? Grenada doubles that. What we have never heard from this government when they are blowing their trumpet about 6% increase (by now you should realize it is always 6%) they have never told us what it cost them to bring in the 6%. This guys have been using the same strategy Chastanet used,which they highly criticized when they were in opposition and now they do not know how to take the next step forward. Are they spending 20% more to get 6%?

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  13. It doesn't matter a damn how many planes & cruise ships come to St Lucia if the majority of the people here don't benefit. The vendors in Castries have already admitted that they are struggling because the cruise ship passengers are not spending.
    Even worse is the situation with stay over tourists, the majority of whom stay in all inclusive hotels and many never even leave the hotel. The main benefit recipients are Butch Stewart & his ilk. Which deluded fool let Sandals loose in St Lucia. In fact when will Kenny Anthony decide to rename St Lucia
    'Sandals Island'
    All inclusive hotels are killing Rodney Bay,for vendors, bars & restaurants.
    Shame on all you politicians who are more interested in back handers than the good of the country.

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  14. Mister Prime Minister:
    It is time to stop the tyranny of your law degree and your nauseating display of crass ignorance of business and economic matters! Give us a freaking break!

    Take a load of that to your chummy friends at the HOS CARICOM conferences. The region is cursed and burdened like us, with likes of you. RESIGN! Give it a rest, man! Give a rest. Your best is not good enough!

    Stop loitering on the doorsteps of the parliament masquerading that you know something about running a government's finances, anywhere but into the ground.

    Go in peace, dear acting Governor in a red political suit.

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  15. All of us spend money at Christmas time that's the it its that's because we are not cheap treat the children right its christmas time

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  16. VAT MONEY NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT.

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  17. Kenny and Tony hurting St.Lucia with economic schizophrenia!

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  18. WHEN THE DOING BUSINESS REPORT LISTED ST. LUCIA AS #1 IN THE REGION FOR DOING BUSINESS, THE DATA WAS ACCURATE RIGHT? HERE OUR OFFICIAL DATA TO ECLAC AND THE WORLD BANK IS UTILIZED AND GIVES A TRUE, OBJECTIVE AND HONEST POSITION FOR ST. LUCIA, IT AINT'T ACCURATE??? YOU CAN FOOL THE IGNORANT LUCIANS WHO DO NOT THINK FOR THEMSELVES BUT NOT THE INTELLIGENT ONES LIKE ME....HAD THAT SAME REPORT LISTED US AS #1 FASTEST GROWING ECONOMY, AH, YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN HAPPY TO TAKE THE PRAISE...BE MAN ENOUGH TO TAKE THE SHAME....YOU HAVE SIMPLY FAILED...

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  19. kenny really think ppl are still naive..

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  20. keep your culture!!

    get the figures straight!! and again these yellow people think they can fool black people!!

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  21. Even if the tourism figures reach one billion and airlift goes up to five hundred flights, as long as the ordinary man cannot feel it in his pocket then the figures do not matter. So Mr.Prime Minister where are the investors to provide work for the people?

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  22. Kenney shut up yr aaaaa

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  23. YES LUCIANS PUT THE LAME DUCK ON BLAST. THINK THE PEOPLE STUPID !! Doctor poop!!

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  24. Without thinking without care for this island and its people, kenny says Chastanet jumps in.

    A damn short memory you have PM. Just to get at Ausbert DAuvergne you said you would tell investors not to come to ST. lucia. As someone wanting to return as PM you did not cae how you would hurt the country. Fact is that would not have denied D Auvergne one meal at his dinner table. It would have denied thousands of ST. Lucians jobs.

    Never in his lowest moment would Sir John have acted to hurt the country as Kenny said he would. Shameful DR. Anthony. The act of an unpatriotic, selfish individual seeking his own needs

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  25. I have never heard any Guyanese who come to St Lucia cry, sit on their tail and c about the government, they ALL hustle to make a living. ALL SOME St Lucians would do is to sit around and complain about the government. As if St Lucia is isolated from the world. Most of the world is hard but SOME people believe St Lucia with NO natural resources must be doing very well economically. The government have to create SOME magic.

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    • Guyanese??? Lets not go there please!!!!!You opening a can of worms.

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    • There is a great lack of initiative and innovation from some of our people. Their misguided dependence on political parties halts the very progression that the seek.

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  26. Kenny ou nee che ah bouden wee kenny.

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  27. Okay! If the ratings from Business Insider are wrong Mr. Prime Minister, what are our ratings? You think you too smart, That is why you can't have a doctor of law as a PM. He is good at spinning things around in his favor. You know better than Business Insider Sir, What are our ratings? Are you closer to #1 in fast economies?
    You gave figures that you may have doctored but that it, how do we compare to Barbados? St. Vincent, Martinique, Grenada, Trinidad (your fav... country) You attacking Allen Chastnet, Allen did not write the report.

    Tell us or true rating Kenny. We need to know. Soon you will attack SNO for publishing this report too? You can't touch the media. Remember you have to repeal 361.

    Kenny behave yourself your days are numbered. The red carpet is about to be swept from under your feet again and this time it will be for good. You have proven Sir that you are unable to manage the affairs of this country.

    Everything i have Sir, i gained under the UNITED WORKERS PARTY. Everything i lost, I loose it under the ST. LUCIA LABOR PARTY.

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    • Very well said. Bravo!!

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    • If you gained anything under the uwp government, you must be a dinosaur. I guess we are better off with the uneducated ministers we had running the country. Guys who have no formal education. St.lucians love ignorance.

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  28. Kenny is an over educated idiot just like my father. Over education means you are most likely terrible at running a business far less an island. Now Chastanet and them can run good business. Folks just ask yourself one question, are you better off under Laba. They promised better days but all promises are for being broken.

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    • Actually Michael Chastanet is the really businessman. I have my doubts about Allen Chastanet. His own father said he won't allow him to run his business because he spends money like a spoilt child at Christmas.

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  29. sorry mr pm , things are really bad.

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  30. The only way we will a strong and solid economy in st.lucia is through Saint Lucian becoming inovative,independent,and self reliant on themselves rather than on a government. Let us do for ourselves. Rockafella,Lincoln and other presidents we're not the individuals who built america. It was the American people. Let us help ourselves. We have so may st.lucians who claim to be rich,drive luxurious cars,live in the biggest mansions; but don't contribute to the economy by way of investment. "If" the economy is in such bad shape,how are they able to afford US$100 thousand dollar cars,million dollar homes. They can be the solution th of driving the economy.

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    • That is a fine comment. I have suggested that government, via statutory bodies, incorporate special purpose companies (spv) in which Lucians may invest. I think Hewanorra would be a good target for such investment but as usual SLP rather have outsiders come own and operate our assets.

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    • I do not think you are living in this world/St Lucia. You said Self Reliant, innovative and independent? Where do we get the money to do that when what ever you make the government take it in taxes? Government must at all time encourage us to become innovative and self reliance. I do not know what you mean by independent but if your innovation and self reliance depends on the public you suck salt. We, including Civil servant, do not have have spending power like before. Thank to this Government.

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  31. Who cares if we are first on this list and tourism is at 1 million if people are still hungry? Things are hard Kenny. Focus on the bread and butter issues. Youth unemployment at an all time high. NO debate there Sir!! Too much energy dispensed on responding to the village idiot!

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  32. So what are the real figures?

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  33. A drowning man will clutch at straws, and Kenny Anthony sure seems to be downing in his political "poop"

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  34. Why do you keep on Misleading your people Dr Kenny Anthony.I am now wondering if the 6% in tourism is true or if it was an attempt to redirect our attention from the Business Insider report. No one in St Lucia is feeling the effects of the 6% increase, so I am asking Why?

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  35. KENNY STOP IT AND PUT WORK ON THE GROUND FOR US TO DO. WE DO NOT WANT YOUR "BETTER DAYS" WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH.ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

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  36. Don't take anyone's word. Look up the information yourself. Why can't we do our due deligence. Think and act for ourselves. Stop playing party politics. Look it up.

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  37. Kenny really how conveneient. The majority of lucians see right through you and it wont work. We dont need any study to tell us the obvious, that the economy is sluggish and the days are the WORST it has ever been. Nice try though but your days are numbered.

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  38. Which figures are wrong in the article?
    The authors seem to use the projected growth rate for 2014-2017

    http://www.businessinsider.com/slowest-economies-in-the-world-2015-6
    2015 GDP: -0.60%
    2016 GDP: +0.80%
    2017 GDP: +1.40%
    2014-17 GDP CAGR: +0.15%

    Are other countries misleading the public about their project growth rate while St. Lucia is underestimating theirs.

    Those numbers were taken directly from the World Bank here.
    http://www.worldbank.org/en/publication/global-economic-prospects/data?region=LAC

    If the World Bank figures are incorrect then can the government please get them to correct it.

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    • Interpretation of "projected" figures.

      Glass half full/ glass half empty.

      Things are definitely hard,worldwide. We are no different,more are we an industrialized nation. We have no resources to rely on. Be positive. Don't let politics define us as a country.

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      • ===
        We have no resources to rely on. Be positive. Don’t let politics define us as a country.
        ===

        Why don't you just shut up then! Loser!

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  39. A picture is worth a thousand words. Facts cannot be refuted. Let the figures count.

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  40. Kenny is telling you when you are poor now, not that your suffering is unreal, he will tell you we are in "Better days"

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  41. Why are they always commenting on the WRONG things?! There are more serious issues at hand for y'all to be releasing press releases on!!!! Chooops!!

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  42. When you told investors not to come to Saint Lucia were you not injuring our island? Up to now you do tell the investors they can come back...

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  43. Kenny now alone you see the article? chooops

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  44. Who's word shall we take.

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  45. Hey Kenny Time to shut up!!! The bottom line is that the people of our country are hurting. Report or not things are not good in the country. You can quote all the flights you wish but this don't mean anything if people are not benefiting. Choops man.

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