The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis seems to be an attractive and realistic alternative to St. Maarten when it comes to importing food items. This emerged from a recent study carried out by consultants of Ecorys and Curconsult, as commissioned by Minister Henk Kamp of Economic Affairs.
St. Kilts is presently already being used as an alternative supplier for St. Eustatius and Saba, after St. Maarten was severely affected by Hurricane Irma, limiting the ability of wholesalers to provide both Statia and Saba with needed supplies.
Over the years, St. Maarten has become the main supplier and point of transhipment for the Northeast Caribbean, and Statia and Saba in particular.
The study performed by Ecorys/Curconsult looked into the development of the Consumer Price Index (CPI), not only on Bonaire, Statia and Saba, but also on surrounding islands, including Antigua, Anguilla and St. Kitts, according to BES Reporter.
Where all islands registered a significant increase in CPI for food products, only St. Kitts showed a significant decline in CPI of no less than 12 per cent over the 2010-2016 period, the study said.
Although the study did not focus on the price level in absolute dollar terms, the negative CPI in St. Kitts seems to at least strongly suggest that the island might be an interesting alternative for importing food products in comparison to, for instance, St. Maarten.
One factor which has for a long time had an adverse effect on economic traffic between Saba, Statia and St. Kitts was the lack of reliable, scheduled and direct transportation to the neighbouring twin-island republic.
With the implementation of a scheduled ferry-service last week between Saba, Statia and St. Kitts, addressing the lack of scheduled transportation, St. Kitts looks like an increasingly viable and very realistic alternative, BES Reporter stated.
The Daily Herald.