St Lucia’s Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, says the multi-billion dollar Pearl of the Caribbean project has always been about transforming the south of the island as St Lucia staged ‘The Richest Race in the Caribbean’ over the weekend.
Chastanet, writing on his Facebook page, said that the project will “provide greater economic, social and leisure opportunities for St Lucians, especially those living in the south.”
He said that the horse racing competition “signals the official beginning of a wave of positive development in Vieux Fort and surrounding communities.
“One of the most adventurous and ambitious projects in the Caribbean.”— Allen Chastanet
“As I have repeated, the Horse Racing Track has not been financed by CIP Funds (Citizenship by Investment), however as the DSH Group enters into the second phase of development which includes hotels, villas and other types of real estate development, the new Phase will have CIP components,” he said.
Under the Caribbean Investment Programme, St Lucia provides citizenship to foreign investors who make a substantial investment in the socio-economic development of the island. St Lucia is among several Caribbean countries with similar investment initiatives.
The government has in the past defended the US$2.6-billion Pearl of the Caribbean project as “one of the most adventurous and ambitious projects in the Caribbean.”
The project, which entails a horse racing track, high-end hotel and residences, a casino, free trade zone, an equine disease-free zone, and a marina, is being undertaken by the Hong Kong-based Desert Star Holdings (DSH), and the government has said it is poised to make St Lucia “an even more unique destination and create economic activity as never before seen in the south of the island.”