LONDON, June 28, 2019 — During the 67th meeting of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Authority in Antigua, Dominica's Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit revealed some of the changes that the member states have agreed on to ensure a unified approach to Citizenship by Investment (CBI) in the region.

There have already been talks about what these new measures will entail, including standardised application forms, the introduction of an oversight committee that will audit all programmes, and establishing uniform legislation. The said committee would include representatives from the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank, the Joint Regional Communications Centre and the OECS Commission.

PM Skerrit said that there are plans to provide CBI staff with training into anti-money laundering and counter financing of terrorism. “It is an important component of good governance especially with financial transactions,” commented Premier Harris. There have also been calls for increased information sharing between OECS member states.

A release issued by the OECS mentions that the participating heads of governments highlighted “the need to intensify efforts towards the standardisation of due diligence arrangements, application protocols and the sharing of information across countries noting the consideration of a hybrid framework to allow flexibility amongst Member States.” The OECS also recommends that there should be a central point of contact for all CBI-related media enquiries, formed within the OECS Commission's Communications Unit and funded jointly by the five member states that currently operate an economic citizenship programme.

Established in 1993, Dominica's Citizenship by Investment Programme is one of the oldest in the world and whose practices are seen as exemplary. The initiative enables reputable global individuals to acquire second citizenship in exchange for an investment into the country's economy. After passing all due diligence checks, applicants can either make a one-off contribution to the Economic Diversification Fund or invest in pre-approved real estate, which currently comprises seven luxurious hotels and resorts, all of whom promote Dominica's flourishing ecotourism. Dominica's government has been using CBI funds to transform its economy and revitalise the quality of life of its citizens.

For the last two years, Dominica has been ranked as the world's best offering for CBI by experts at the Financial Times' Professional Wealth Management magazine. The report, titled the CBI Index, highlighted the programme's exemplar due diligence procedures, affordability and efficiency as some of the reasons why Dominica's CBI remains on top.

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SOURCE CS Global Partners

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