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UWP outlines achievements since taking office

Press Release

The United Workers Party takes the opportunity today to say a heartfelt thank you to all Saint Lucians, who on June 6th 2016 participated in the democratic process and elected our hard working and visionary team of men and women under the banner of “Building a New Saint Lucia”.

The people expressed convincingly their confidence in the United Workers Party and we commend the Government for the work that has been done so far in achieving the promises made in the party’s manifesto.

Since entering office the Government has been faced with a high unemployment rate, poor road maintenance, poor infrastructure and high debt. Despite these challenges the United Workers Party Government has been able to start meeting its goals and fixing some of the current issues. The Party applauds the Prime Minister and the Cabinet of Ministers for their bravery, boldness, wisdom and ability to stay the course.

The steps and changes our Political Leader has taken in mapping the way forward for our country will ensure opportunities for all St. Lucians, from all parts of Saint Lucia. We especially commend the Government for their attention being given to the development of the south.

One year later the United Workers Party is proud of its achievements in Government and its fulfillment of the “Five to Stay Alive” plan which was one of the platforms of our campaign. Being an effective government involves listening and translating the concerns of the people into workable proposals for implementation and we thank the Government for the continuous sharing of information and openness on issues.

Today we give God thanks and praise for our first year in office and we continue to lift up our leaders in prayers. The United Workers Party takes the opportunity to thank all who attended the service on Tuesday afternoon.

Here is a list of just some of the achievements so far by the UWP Administration since assuming office:

Agriculture

-Doubled the budget of the Ministry of Agriculture

-Support for Farmers after Tropical a storm Matthew

-Successful handover of the Aquaculture farms at Union

-Feeder roads throughout the island

-Increased incentives for farmers

-Identified markets in England and France for Bananas

Education

-Reconstruction of the Choiseul Secondary School

-Doubled the amount on the School Feeding Programme

-Doubled the amount on the School Transportation Programme

-Commencement of turning Sir Arthur into a university

Justice

-Appointment of a Director of Public Prosecutions

-Reopened the Forensic Laboratory

-More resources supplied to the Ministry of Justice via support from the US

-Clearing of over 300 backlogged cases by the DPP

-Identified temporary home for all the courts

Social Programmes

-Restructured NICE programme and employed 200 more persons for home elderly care programme

Infrastructure

-De-silting of all major rivers and drains throughout the island

-Works to Millennium Highway

-Improvements to main road in Corinth

-Works to Laborne road

-Commencement of Canaries Bridge

-Commencement of Thomazo Bridge

-Island wide assessment of all bridges and culverts

-Commencement of Dennery Valley water project

Tourism/Investments

-BlackBay Hotel Project

-Expansion of Castries Harbor to accommodate Mega Cruiseships

-Ojo Labs Artificial Intelligence Centre in Vieux Fort

-The Horseracing Track for the Pearl of the Caribbean

-Secured financing for Redevelopment of Hewannorra International Airport

-Sandals La Source at Pigeon Island announcement

-Canelles hotel project in Vieux Fort announcement

-Coconut Bay expansion by 200 rooms

-Commencement of French villa development in Choiseul

-Announcment of plans for Vieux Fort cruise port

Employment

-Unemployment reduced to 20.1%

-Commenced Training of St Lucians in Tourism and Hospitality. Over 150 have already been trained and placed in jobs and another 150 are currently being trained

-Opening of the Royalton creating over 800 jobs

Health

-Targeted amnesty on hospital bills

-Finalized plans to open Owen King EU Hospital

-Conducted an audit to assess St Judes Hospital to determine the way forward. We have started the work to reopen St Judes at the soonest.

-Extension of hours at Gros Islet polyclinic

Taxes

-Reduced VAT to 12.5%

-Property Tax Amnesty until 2018

-Freeze on Residential property tax for 3 years

-VAT deferral payments on imports for Manufacturers

-The first ever Debt Management Plan for Saint Lucia

Promises -5 to Stay Alive

-Reduced VAT to 12.5% from 15%

-Reduced the tax on vehicle licenses

-Doubled the amount spent on the School transport and feeding programmes

-3 year Property tax on residential properties

-Targeted Amnesty on hospital bills

Youth and Sports

-Commencement of installation of lights on fields in Canaries, Choiseul, Dennery and Babonneau

-Support for Islands athletes at Rio Olympic Games

More achievements:

-Only Cabinet in Caribbean where all Ministers are certified Chartered Directors

-Made CIP programme more competitive

-Increased investor trust and confidence

-Opening of Community Park at Bexon/Marc

-The Forestierre Housing development

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