Dominica To Sign Airport Agreement On June 9

The Dominican government says it will sign a contract for the construction of an international airport on June 9 with the Canadian-based Montreal Management Consultants Establishment Limited (MMCE).

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The Dominican government says it will sign a contract for the construction of an international airport on June 9 with the Canadian-based Montreal Management Consultants Establishment Limited (MMCE).

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, speaking on his weekly television programme last night, said the signing of the agreement will signal the start of the airport construction.

“So forward we go, June 9 is the date that we will sign the agreement with Montreal Management that will signal the official commencement of the airport and I want to thank MMCE for its willingness to underwrite a commitment,” Skerrit stated.

“This is a huge ask so for any individual or any entity but because of the relationship that we have been able to establish, mutual respect and mutual understanding MMCE has agreed to partner with Dominica.”

“Tell me, a country, or an individual, tell me a firm that is prepared to do this, then you can give me a call,” Skerrit, said, adding “those of you who cannot give biscuits should not take the bread out of their mouths.

The government had earlier said that at least eight international companies had shown interest in the construction of the international airport on the island’s northeast coast.

Since 2013, Skerrit had announced plans for the airport to be situated on lands, between the Woodford Hill and Wesley villages.

“I am humbled to be the leader of the country leading the charge for this airport,” Skerrit said, noting that the construction is taking place at a time when the international community is fighting the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“I thank God for his blessings to this country in a most difficult period in the world with COVID-19 challenging the world in 2020 and when we were all praying for the first of January 2021 to come and we are seeing the prolonged nature of COVID-19, where countries are reeling from the economic and financial strain…huge strain on their health system, we in Dominica, we in this small island with no natural resources beyond our environment…that we are speaking about in the most difficult economic period…we are talking about the construction of an international airport,” Skerrit said.

Montreal Management Consultants will develop and construct the international airport, utilizing the funding mechanism of the Citizenship by Investment Programme (CBI).

Under the CBI, Dominica provides citizenship to foreign investors who make a significant contribution to the socio-economic development of the island.

Meanwhile, Samuel Johnson, Chief Executive Officer of the International Airport Development Company, is standing behind the decision to engage the US-based global aviation consulting firm Landrum & Brown to design the airport.

Johnson, speaking also on the television programme, said the US firm has a tremendous track record and brings a wealth of experience to the job.

“I have gone through several of the studies that have been done over the years and Landrum & Brown is a global professional services firm. They have been around quite a bit with focus primarily on aviation planning and development,” he said.

“Actually they have been around for 70 years. They have worked on many significant airport development projects over the world,” he said, adding that the company has been involved in projects in the Americas…”

In 2019, Skerrit told the nation that “with the solid support of the People’s Republic of China, Dominica will have its international airport” and he was hoping that work would begin in earnest in 2020.

Source: Loop News Caribbean

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