Antigua and Barbuda: Prime Minister Gaston Browne and Minister for Works Lennox Weston visited the Jolly Beach property in St. Mary on Tuesday. The government has earmarked the property for acquisition and renovation.
While presenting his budget on February 3, Prime Minister Gaston Browne informed the nation that the Government would acquire the Jolly Beach property to renovate the hotel, that had previously employed more than 450 Antiguans and Barbudans.
During the Budget presentation, the PM also announced the Government’s commitment to paying the severance due to the Jolly Beach workers upon successfully acquiring the property.
Prime Minister Browne explored a number of options to secure the resources needed to boost the recovery and transformation of the economy. A USD 200 million bond was issued on the international capital market and has been fully subscribed. This financing would provide an incredible opportunity for the Government to re-profile its debt, ensure sustainability going forward, and invest in strategic projects that will drive economic growth, create employment, and generate increased revenue to finance government operations.
According to Prime Minister Browne, the proceeds from the bond will be used to implement projects that will stimulate the economy and secure growth of 8 percent this year.
The Prime Minister further claimed that two of these projects are the acquisition and renovation of the Jolly Beach Hotel and the construction of a hotel resort at Morris Bay.
The Works Minister Lennox Weston, accompanied by engineers and architects, upon being granted the green light to proceed with the renovation and redevelopment work at Jolly Beach, said that his team is ready to move forward with the project and will commence work immediately.
PM Browne also said that, more than five hundred persons would gain employment at the facility upon completion of the project.