Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 12, 2023 (SKNIS): Cash transfers of $500 are continuing every month to qualifying citizens and residents as the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis provides support under the Poverty Alleviation Programme (PAP).
Estimates on government expenditure for the PAP will run in the neighbourhood of $30 million to $40 million this year as persons continue to register for support, while others graduate as their economic situation improves. Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Honourable Dr. Terrance Drew, said that the government is working to enhance opportunities so that people can enjoy a better quality of life.
“We are talking about building a sustainable island state, and that (PAP) is not a sustainable process ... No country can really sustain that,” the prime minister stated during The Roundtable Discussion with members of the media on May 11, 2023. “We don’t have oil here. We don’t have diamonds nor pearls; we depend fundamentally on tourism; we have the CBI (Citizenship by Investment) programme ... but PAP is really not sustainable the way it was established.”
Instead, the government's focus is centred on empowering people with initiatives such as increasing the minimum wage and expanding opportunities for work as a means to address poverty.
“We want to help people to grow well through home ownership, land ownership, and increased wages. Get better educated; start a small business; sharpen your skills; get out into the workforce and produce,” Prime Minister Dr. Drew said.
Dr. Drew said that this will help the country to be built on merit and create additional opportunities for productive persons to be gainfully engaged while the $500 PAP cash transfers assist the most vulnerable in society.
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