PM Says Drop In Unemployment ‘Encouraging’

Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, has described as ‘encouraging news’, reports that unemployment for the fourth quarter of 2018 was seven percentage points less than that of 2017.

Writing on his official Facebook page, Chastanet noted that the rate had dropped from 23.2% to 16.2%.

At the same time, he noted that overall youth Unemployment has been reduced by 2.2% from 38.5% to 36.2%.

The figures were contained in the Fourth Quarter and Annual 2018 Labour Force Survey Statistics.

Senior Communications Officer in the Office of the Prime Minister, Nicole Mc Donald told St Lucia Times that the government remains committed to further reducing the unemployment rate here.

“While we are encouraged by the figures we have been seeing over the last two years in terms of the downturn in unemployment, we are equally encouraged that in the fourth quarter we have seen an immense downturn in the youth unemployment rate,” she stated.

She asserted that a lot of things the administration has been doing have been geared towards creating the opportunities and environment for people to get employment.

“We have had initiatives such as the Ojo Labs initiative that has seen the employment of a number of young people in the South of the Island,” Mc Donald explained.

“We believe in diversifying when it comes to employment in terms of the entire country benefitting from the economic activity that has been happening,” she told St Lucia Times.

Mc Donald pointed out that over the last two years heading into the last quarter, it has been seen that this country began to ‘turn a corner’.

“This is in direct correlation with the policies of this administration,” she asserted.

However she made it clear that the government is by no means satisfied and will continue working.

“You did hear the Prime Minister say in his New Year’s address that this will be a year of implementation,” she stated.

Mc Donald noted that there are several projects coming on stream this year including the Hewanorra International Airport (HIA) redevelopment project.

She also mentioned plans to develop a cruise port in the South of the Island, the development of the agriculture sector and ensuring that there is focus on local produce to reduce Saint Lucia’s food import bill.

“There are so many things happening all at once that will benefit all sector and will do doubt result in economic activity and economic benefits for the entire country,” Mc Donald stated.


    • Slu that’s all you deduced from that article? You have no other contribution that might encourage thought or discussion? I guess you are “Not a too smart reader”.

      • Blackshade, understanding the facts of the issues concerning unemployment and looking at the comments of the PM and Nicole, Slu concluded that the PM is “not to smart”. It takes a smart reader to reach that conclusion. Let me help you further. Ones utterances can make you conclude a lot about them.

        And by the way, the description blackshade suggest you are really in the dark.

  1. This group has been in power for about two years. As mentioned in this article the turn around was a result of the last two year. I guess things don’t happen in a vacuum. So the correlation should be part an parcel the foundation built during the last administration. A better analogy would be a train moving from a starting position takes some time to get to full speed, likewise when the brakes is applied it comes to a full stop in about a mile. The economy works the same way. One just doesn’t get to grow the economy overnight. Hopefully Nichole understands that without this foundation we would not be at this point. My point is that the accolades should be a shared event.
    With all the money being spent presently by this group we better see some progress. Our deficit has ballooned immensely. This will be felt by the next generation if the policies don’t pan out.

    • I will have to agree with you. Although the way things work the party in power takes the credit for the positives but are never willing to take it for the negatives. For instance crime. We can say it is a shared responsibility due to past and present administrations failing to deal with it adequately. But I will seriously put the bulk of the blame on the current administration. They a mute and inept on the crime wave hitting the country. Plus a promise was made. So keep it and we are not say zero crime but at least make us a little safer.

  2. Tell the unemployed that this is a fact. Radio St. Lucia and Tourist Board staff are still unemployed. Yeah right, tell people who can’t go to the supermarket about your encouraging figures. Go ride a horse Chastanet

    • It was a reduction in unemployment not full employment. And your statement is not rooted it facts but rather in emotional political rhetoric.

  3. This is what politicians do best. They are the best artists in the world. These people paint the best picture of a bad situation. Where are the good paying jobs in St. Lucia? Finding a reasonably paying job presently is like looking for a lost diamond ring in the entire Pacific Ocean. Are these politicians living in fantasy land? They need to get a good dose of reality. The unemployment figures are frighteningly unacceptable especially among the youth population. No wonder so many young people are choosing a criminal career because gainful employment seems hopelessly impossible. Living in St. Lucia for the ordinary man feels like being on a plane, 5 000ft up high, then all the engines start to severely malfunction but the pilot stating everything is perfect.

    • You have hit the nail on the head with the hammer as most jobs are security jobs that pay 4:25 an hour and you have to work 12 hours a day the young people find that these jobs can’t take you nowhere in life so they rather rob the business places no one should work for less than 12 dollars an hour that should be law

  4. Dear Nicole:
    Just want to start this little note by telling you that you don’t have to be that bright to know that anybody can use statistics to say anything. As a result, I would be grateful if you can identify exactly where these jobs were created. Of course, you cited Ojo Labs but we all know that it was around before the last quarter and has not improved its numbers.
    Now, Nicole, you describe a 2.2% drop in youth unemployment as immense. Are you kidding me? While we are at it, can you ask your Boss if he knows what a 7% drop in unemployment represents. Let him know that this represents in excess of three thousand (3000) people no longer looking for work. Can that be justified? I doubt, Nicole.
    Nicocole, my dear, I suggest that you advise your Boss to get real work done and stop the bluff and lies.
    En bien bon

  5. Again the PM cherry-picks the numbers that suits his agenda he forgets to mention that the overal unemployment stayed the same

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