Sunday, 14th July 2024

PM Harris: Multi-agency approach to due diligence is central feature of St. Kitts-Nevis' CBI industry

Sunday, 7th July 2024

Timothy Harris.

St. Kitts and Nevis' Prime Minister, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris said during his feature address at the opening of the two-day Caribbean Investment Summit here in St. Kitts that, "All countries that are participating in citizenship programmes have prioritized and improved due diligence as a central feature of operations."

Prime Minister Harris added: "Our multi-agency approach to due diligence, which no doubt has become industry standard across the region, has resulted in our regional programmes being highly regarded as safe and robust."

The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis has excellent working relationships with regional and international crime-fighting agencies, such as the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), the Joint Regional Communications Centre (JRCC), and the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL).

"How have we survived 35 years? We had the good sense to stay ahead of the market, save for the dark period of maladministration prior to 2015," Prime Minister Harris said, alluding to the era under the leadership of Denzil Douglas' administration. During that era, the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis was increasingly isolated from its traditional allies due to ill-advised actions, including granting St. Kitts and Nevis passports with their country of origin concealed. There were also diplomatic imbroglios, such as the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network's (FinCEN's) advisory of May 20th, 2014 and the Canadian government's revocation of the visa-free status of citizens of St. Kitts and Nevis, effective November 22nd, 2014.

"My administration has since strengthened the CBI programme, reformed it administratively and legislatively, imposed the most vigorous due diligence tests, rebuilt trust with international partners, and held and continues to hold open and frank discussions with the European Union, Canada and the USA regarding our programme," Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris said today, Thursday, June 20th, 2019.

The 4th annual Caribbean Investment Summit kicked off this morning at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort. In the wake of rave reviews last year, the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis is hosting the event again this year, coinciding with the 35th anniversary of its pioneering Citizenship by Investment Programme – the oldest and best of its kind.

Addressing approximately 400 stakeholders in the global Citizenship by Investment industry, who are attending the two-day summit, Prime Minister Harris said, "We invite all participants to do their very best to ensure only characters of high repute are invited to our programme."