CARIBPR WIRE, Basseterre, St. Kitts, Mon. Nov. 21, 2022: The twin federation of St Kitts and Nevis has had a long and fruitful relationship with Canada and the two nations continue to develop initiatives that strengthen relations.
From 5 to 7 December 2022 the government of Canada will provide biometric processing of visa applications in St Kitts and Nevis. This comes as positive news as nationals of St Kitts and Nevis are normally required to travel abroad to centers in Barbados, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent, and the Grenadines, or even Trinidad and Tobago, to have their biometric information collected for Canadian visa applications.
The processing will be conducted by Canadian officials and this special arrangement is aimed at visa applicants that fall within one of the following categories:
St Kitts and Nevis nationals who anticipate travel to Canada;
Persons who have already applied online or by mail for a visa, work or study permit or for
permanent residence for Canada and have received their Biometric Instruction Letter; and
Nationals of other countries residing in St Kitts and Nevis are also required to provide their biometric information for planned travel to Canada.
When applying for a Canadian visa, whether for visitation, work, study, or for residence purposes, nationals of St Kitts and Nevis, as well as nationals from other countries, must provide biometric information such as fingerprints and an identity photograph.
Visa applicants are encouraged to complete an online visa application as soon as possible, in order to take advantage of this December opportunity. This could be of benefit to applicants planning to travel for educational purposes, business, tourism, family reunifications, and more.
Monday, November 28, 2022, is the last day to schedule an appointment for the available period in December. Appointment requests that are received after this date will not be accommodated unless appointments that have already been made are cancelled and a booking space becomes available.
Visa applicants must have a scheduled appointment and must bring along the required Biometrics Instruction Letter to their appointment. Officials will not collect applications or biometric information from applicants who have not received this letter.
The schedule for the collection of biometric information collection will take place from 08:30 to 17:30 on Monday to Wednesday, 5 to 7 December 2022, at the St Kitts Marriott Resort. Directions to the precise location within the hotel will be provided upon arrival.
In order to book an appointment for biometrics collection, please write to [email protected]
The governments of Canada and St Kitts and Nevis partner on a number of important issues, with an emphasis on matters of economic resilience and climate. St Kitts and Nevis has a High Commission in Ottawa and a consulate in Toronto, while Canada is represented in St Kitts and Nevis by the High Commission of Canada in Barbados, all of which help to strengthen bilateral ties between the two countries.
According to the government of Canada, Canada’s merchandise exports to St Kitts and Nevis totaled CA$5.2 million and merchandise imports from St Kitts and Nevis totaled CA$2.9 million in 2021. During this period, Canada’s main exports to St Kitts and Nevis included live animals and animal products, food products, and metals.
Even before the recent COP27, Canada announced the CA$100 million pledge for Caribbean Reconstruction and Economic and Climate Resilience to support St Kitts and Nevis and the region in reconstruction and climate resilience, following the disastrous 2017 hurricane season in the Caribbean. According to the Canadian government, this included strengthening natural disaster planning and response through organizations such as the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency.
At the CARICOM Intersessional Meeting in February 2020, Canada announced an additional CA$61.5 million in new commitments for resilience, technical assistance, and education exchanges for the Caribbean. This includes, for example, the Canada-CARICOM Expert Deployment Mechanism, which provides technical assistance to CARICOM governments, including St Kitts and Nevis, to help diversify and strengthen the economy, build climate-resilient communities, and reduce gender and economic inequalities.
Canada is the largest contributor to the International Monetary Fund’s Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre, which has provided technical assistance to St Kitts and Nevis in internal audit, and tax and customs administration.
St Kitts and Nevis also works closely with Canada in multilateral domains such as the Commonwealth, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Organization of American States (OAS), the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).
St Kitts and Nevis also benefits from the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives, and Canada’s partnership with non-governmental organizations and regional institutions, such as St Kitts and Nevis-based Eastern Caribbean Central Bank and the Caribbean Development Bank. Canada represents St Kitts and Nevis and other Caribbean nations on the Board of Governors of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
Many investors from Canada and other wealthy nations have participated in citizenship by investment programme offered by the government of St Kitts and Nevis. This programme is the oldest and one of the most trusted programmes of its kind in the world. Since 1984, it has allowed investors and their families to legally obtain citizenship in one of the Caribbean’s most idyllic places. Through this programme, foreign investors to St Kitts and Nevis can obtain citizenship for life, with the right to live and work in the island country, the ability to share citizenship with future generations, and taking advantage of having more global mobility. St Kitts and Nevis also offers investors a fair tax regime, with no worldwide income, inheritance, or gift tax for tax residents.
There are two main ways in which an applicant can apply for citizenship under St Kitts and Nevis citizenship by investment programme: by donating to the country’s Sustainable Growth Fund or by investing in pre-approved real estate.
The country’s CBI programme is also undergoing an upgrade under the leadership of the new St Kitts and Nevis prime minister, Dr. Terrance Drew. The new changes will ensure strengthened legislative and administrative oversight of the programme to ensure that it meets the needs of a changing investor whilst also being beneficial to the local citizens. Prime Minister Drew is determined to retain the country’s CBI status – which is one of the best in the world.