BASSETERRE, St. Kitts and Nevis — A number of developers, whose projects have been approved for the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) programme met several times with Senior Government officials and the Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU) to discuss the current CBI programme. These meetings were held to discuss a collaborative approach to improving the programme and to discuss the Government’s strategic plan for additional regulations and controls around the real estate option.
During the meeting all agreed that they must be proactive in promoting the highest standard of the CBI programme, consistent with St Kitts and Nevis' platinum brand. It was emphasized during the meetings that no developer or agent had the legal authority to alter the approved prices established under the legislative framework that guides the programme. Developers pledged that any promotional actions on their part, or that of their agents, would reflect the following prices, as per the statutory requirements for real estate:
USD $400,000.00 to qualify for resale after 5 years
USD $200,000.00 to qualify for resale after 7 years
It was emphasized that the CIU would not accept any applications for processing that reflect prices that are contrary to the current regulations. The CIU also confirmed that it will vigorously enforce the regulations governing the CBI programme and that the department has been investigating and intends to act decisively against those whose actions undermine the integrity of the programme.
There was a strong commitment by all parties to work cooperatively to preserve the integrity of the St. Kitts and Nevis CBI programme which has become recognized as the oldest and best programme on account of its robust due diligence practices.
The developers also endorsed the Government’s proposed amendments to the Escrow Bill. These amendments will require that funds for all real estate applications be put into escrow accounts at the time of an “approval in principle”, and that these funds be released based on a payout schedule, to be determined, dependent on completion of construction. The Government also advised of a number of additional changes to enhance the St. Kitts and Nevis programme as an innovator in the market place and to strengthen its integrity.
Mr. Faron Lawrence, President of the Chamber of Commerce stated “The CBI Program is a major component of our livelihood as clearly indicated in our country’s 2019 Budget. It is therefore the duty of all of us – private and public sectors, government and opposition and all stakeholders to do what is necessary not only to protect, but also to continue to grow and expand the industry. Key to that is good and effective regulations that safeguard our Program and our St. Kitts & Nevis brand."
The Government of St Kitts and Nevis and its CIU are committed to working closely with industry partners to ensure that the St Kitts and Nevis CBI programme remains best in class.
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