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World Bank confident about Saint Lucia says Prime Minister Stephenson King


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Contact: Bevan Springer

 

From left: Barbadian Hazel Eastmond Carasco, Prime Minister Stephenson King, Minister of Physical Planning Richard Frederick and St. Lucian community leader Gregor Granderson.

From left: Barbadian Hazel Eastmond Carasco, Prime Minister Stephenson King, Minister of Physical Planning Richard Frederick and St. Lucian community leader Gregor Granderson.

Tuesday,  March 17, 2009   BROOKLYN, New York (March 17, 2009) - The World Bank has expressed renewed confidence in the Government of St. Lucia and will assist the 30 year-old island nation weather the global economic crisis, the island's Prime Minister told his compatriots here over the weekend here in New York.

 

Prime Minister Stephenson King, accompanied by his wife and daughter as well as Minister of Physical Planning Richard Frederick at the 30th Independence gala celebrations in Brooklyn, said the Bank has committed resources to help the country sustain itself for the next two to three years based on programs that St. Lucia will design and present to the Bretton Woods institution. "To select St. Lucia as one of four countries in the entire Eastern Caribbean (and) to offer such assistance is an indication of the Word Bank's confidence in the Government and People of St. Lucia," said Prime Minister King.

 

A section of the 350-strong gala attendees on Saturday night

A section of the 350-strong gala attendees on Saturday night

Reassuring the 350-strong audience who had converged on Brooklyn's historic Grand Prospect Hall for the celebrations, Prime Minister King said that on the occasion of three decades of Independence "our achievements are beyond our own selves, our achievements are beyond our own shores, our achievements are recognized throughout the world, and therefore in congratulating you I ask you to hold your heads high, hold your shoulders high and consider yourself a proud St. Lucian ready and determined to help your country move forward for another 30 years."

 

Departing from the academic style presentation he had prepared for the evening, the Prime Minister instead highlighted St. Lucia's achievements in academia, education, communications, infrastructure, health, agriculture and tourism over the past 30 years and was hopeful that Sir Arthur Lewis Community College would soon be transformed into a tertiary institution. He said that as the world searches for answers to the current global economic crisis, St. Lucia perseveres and will continue to empower and support its people to transform the economy of St. Lucia, including its overseas-based nationals whom he congratulated for the remittances, educational pursuits, and commerce and business activities that have each helped the fledgling nation.

 

"(Looking at the challenges), we will put our shoulders to the wheel and continue to work in the interest of the development of our country. We look to the future with great anticipation, with great hope and with great courage that you in these parts can come forward and give support to the Government and People of St. Lucia," said Prime Minister King who emphasized that his government has made it a priority to engage its overseas-based nationals in the social and economic development of the country.

 

St. Lucia's Ambassador to the United Nations, Ambassador Donatus St. Aimee thanked St. Lucians across the Tri-State area around New York, and beyond, for their contribution to the success of the gala as well as to the preceding Independence activities which included cultural presentations, poetry readings, a flag raising ceremony at Brooklyn's Borough Hall, a church service, and the Ambassador's official reception.

 

He said that both the St. Lucia Mission to the United Nations and the Consulate looked forward to continuing the hard work ahead as well as to further mobilizing the nation's overseas-based residents to participate in the nation's development. "The Prime Minister has fired us all up and we are excited about meeting the challenges of the future with confidence," he said.


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