LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Mar 10, 2019–Local business in the Caribbean islands of St Kitts and Nevis is thriving as small and medium enterprises were announced that they will soon be able to access a US$3-million funding pool. According to a recent press release issued by the Office of the Prime Minister of St Kitts and Nevis, the CARICOM Development Fund signed a concessional loan agreement with the Federation as part of the second cycle of the eight-year Country Assistance Programme.
The funding aims to facilitate entrepreneurs’ access to technical and financial assistance, improve competitiveness and productive capacity, promote innovation, boost employment rates and accelerate economic growth on the islands. The beneficiary sectors include women and youth start-ups, light manufacturing, agri-business and agriculture, tourism, infrastructure and sustainability.
The financial support is important to address the problem resident business owners are said to be facing in accessing funds. Prime Minister Timothy Harris explained that “access to funding has been identified repeatedly as one of the main challenges to small businesses.” As a result, all citizens of St Kitts and Nevis that qualify for the scheme are “encouraged to take full advantage of this opportunity,” mentions the release issued by the Prime Minister’s Press Unit.
Prior to this, an additional US$1.33m was agreed on for the Enhancement of Frigate Bay as another component of the second cycle of the Country Assistance Programme. A similar end purpose serves the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF) under the twin-island nation’s Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Programme. It channels funds from foreign investors seeking the country’s valuable citizenship into socio-economic initiatives on the islands, such as supporting entrepreneurship or the development of tourism, amongst others. Every applicant contributes with at least US$150,000 to the SGF and the reason it works well is because it remains the most straightforward and secure route to St Kitts and Nevis’ citizenship.
Increased foreign investment under CBI has been growing sustainably in St Kitts and Nevis due to the country’s unrivalled experience as the world’s longest-serving citizenship by investment programme. A recent World Justice Project reportranked it within the top 30 countries across the globe for rule of law, explaining why applicants looking to become economic citizens in a law-abiding system often opt for St Kitts and Nevis specifically.