The decision-making process on Foreign Direct Investment applications will be restructured so that applications under $10 million will not be required to be submitted to the National Economic Council, said Prime Minister the Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis.
This is one of a number of policy directions the Government will be pursuing based on recommendations from the Economic Recovery Committee (ERC). The Prime Minister tabled the ERC’s Executive Summary Report in the House of Assembly today.
The Committee has proposed a broad range of reforms and recommendations intended to seed new industries and economic opportunities to expand existing ones; make The Bahamas more attractive for domestic and international investment; and to make certain bureaucratic systems more efficient and less burdensome for citizens and businesses.
“Consistent with the recommendations of the ERC, we will expedite the processing of the Bahamian and Foreign direct investments currently before the Government,” said the Prime Minister.
The Committee is also working on specific suggestions to expand the National Investment Policy, said Prime Minister Minnis.
The national investment process will be further digitized for domestic and international investors and other recommendations will be brought forward to make it easier for citizens, businesses and investors to access and use government services online.
As part of strategy to build a broader digital economy, the Government will promote the development of a National Digital Marketplace.
“This e-commerce platform can provide opportunity for small businesses and Bahamian entrepreneurs to buy and sell goods online across The Bahamas and provide opportunities for global sales,” said the Prime Minister.
The Prime Minister updated the House on three investment projects that are still on track that will help in the economic recovery, including post-COVID-19.
Work is ongoing on the $200 million redevelopment of the downtown cruise port in Nassau by Nassau Cruise Port Ltd.
Environmental studies are complete, the demolition of the Customs warehouse has taken place and the demolition of Festival Place is imminent.
“A new world-class cruise port will be built so that as the cruising industry recovers, The Bahamas will remain a destination of choice for cruise lines,” said the Prime Minister.
On Grand Bahama, ITM and RCCL have indicated their intention to carry out their investment in the Grand Lucayan project and redevelopment of the cruise port.
The developers have proposed an amended phased approach to the development, which is presently under review by the Government. The proposed project includes extensive renovations to the existing hotel and hotel property.
The Construction of GoldWynn, Nassau’s newest 156-unit condo-hotel and residences east of Goodman’s Bay is well underway, said Prime Minsiter Minnis.
The parade and mezzanine levels of the building are now fully completed and the second level is underway. Completions and delivery is on track for December 2021.
GoldWynn represents an investment by the developers of approximately $130 million. At present, the project has a work force of approximately 150 workers in construction. As the project moves into completion, employment figures are expected to rise to 250-plus.
Prime Minister Minnis said there are a number of other investment projects that he will continue to report on in the House and in other reports to the Bahamian people.
“The policy reforms we are embarking upon through the ERC report are intended to help expand the Bahamian economy of old,” said the Prime Minister.
The ERC represents a cross-section of the public and private sectors and is co-chaired by Acting Financial Secretary, Mr. Marlon Johnson, and Mr. Kenneth Kerr, the CEO of Providence Advisors.
To view the ERC’s Summary Report, visit www.opm.gov.bs.