St Helena: Airport

House of Lords written question – answered on 15 November 2011.

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Photo of Lord Ashcroft Lord Ashcroft Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to promote investment in St Helena following the opening of the airport.

Photo of Baroness Northover Baroness Northover Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip), Lords Spokesperson (Department for International Development)

The Department for International Development (DfID) is working in partnership with the St Helena Government (SHG) so that the island can take full advantage of the economic opportunities that the airport will bring. In the last year, significant progress has been made across a series of reforms to tax, investment, land, and immigration policies in order to encourage private sector activities and attract new investors.

A new post, the Chief Executive of Economic Development, has also been created. The chief executive is co-ordinating investment promotion efforts, including tourism, to make sure that St Helena is a good place to work and do business in. His mandate has been designed so that he oversees all domestic and international investment proposals: he is also chair of the St Helena Development Agency (SHDA), which provides assistance to help start-up and support local businesses on the island. SHDA is fully funded by DfID. The tourism sector is an early priority for attracting new investment in St Helena.

HMG will continue to work closely with SHG and the new chief executive to secure the best benefits possible in advance of, and following, the opening of the airport.

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