Chartered Accountant, Richard Peterkin, believes that Saint Lucia should keep watch as the partial United States government shutdown continues.
In comments invited by St Lucia Times, Peterkin expressed the view that anything which happens in this country’s main source markets for tourism and business needs to be watched because of the likely impact here.
“At this stage of the game there’s a lot of politics involved. We don’t know how long it will last,” Peterkin observed in relation to the shutdown in the US.
“If you look at the departments that are affected, the ones that potentially could have the greatest impact are those like Homeland Security which impact operations at the airports,” the Chartered Accountant told St Lucia Times.
He disclosed that he was recently in Miami where he was warned that there might be delays, but there were none.
“I think our greatest concern would be if in fact the shutdown lasts for a long time and has an impact on Homeland Security and other departments affecting travel. But I don’t believe that there is any indication based on cancellations or delays of flights, that there has been a problem so far.”
“We are hopeful that it will not be a shutdown that affects us, but as a people we have to be concerned about those who are not working; not getting paid. But just looking at it from the point of view of affecting Saint Lucia, I am not aware. You will have to look at each and every department where there are transactions that require people to do do certain things to the extent to which the absence of those folks could affect those transactions,” Peterkin told St Lucia Times.
The partial US government shutdown is part of the latest battle between Democrats and President Donald Trump, who insists he must get money from Congress to build a wall on the southern border between the States and Mexico.
Both sides are at a standstill, while an estimated 800,000 federal employees are not getting paid, some of them forced to work because they are in essential services.