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Savings Bonds - Encouraging Saint Lucians To Save

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Contact: Rose Marie Harris

Tuesday, July 30, 2002 – A motion to issue a new set of government bonds has been described as a means through which St,. Lucians could save and invest in the economy. In presenting the motion to the House of Assembly on Tuesday July 30, 2002, Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Honourable Dr. Kenny Anthony explained the need for Saint Lucians to save much more than they are doing now.

“I want to make the point that our savings ratio in our country is way far too low. We consume too much, we spend too much of our money on material things, on perishable things and we are not doing enough to save and so the bonds is an opportunity whether it is for the ordinary civil servant or whether for the business man it is an opportunity to earn decent interest.”

While seeking authorisation from the Parliament of Saint Lucia to raise a sum not exceeding $6,000,000 to finance the Saving Bonds Dr. Anthony says the government of Saint Lucia will apply to the Eastern Caribbean Securities Commission to release the bond issue through the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank ECCB.

“This of course is a very new development for the region. As a direct result of the establishment of this security exchange this would enable investors or Saint Lucian residents or Saint Lucians who are residents elsewhere to tap into that mechanism. This will enable investors to trade securities also as a secondary market and that will enable them to sell their instruments if they do not wish to hold them until maturity. If a Saint Lucian decides to invest five thousand dollars in bonds and decides that this is good business but he wants to make more out of it that Saint Lucian will have the opportunity to place his or her bonds on the Securities Exchange and allow someone to purchase those bonds even at a higher price.”

The bonds will be sold to residents of Saint Lucia and the wider region in various denominations. The Finance minister says this will facilitate the use of the bonds by the small investor and those bigger investors capable of investing half a million dollars or more.


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