Puerto Azul Advertises For Christmas; Project Still Lacks EIA
An online article states that quote, “Everything is ready for the first eight-star resort in the world” and that “The inauguration will take place during Christmas”. The article, posted on lamiafinanza.com, is referring to the Puerto Azul project and as far as we know, there has been no development with it. When we asked CEO in the Ministry of Trade, Investment Promotion and Private Sector Development, Mike Singh, about it, he told us that the investors have not submitted an Environmental Impact Assessment so there is no way that anything is ready for the project.
“Well I will confess to you I haven’t seen the article so I don’t know what it said. Where we left Puerto Azul was at the point where they were supposed to submit an EIA and it was going to the Evaluation Committee. I don’t know that they’ve submitted it much less to the evaluation committee. So any article that’s claiming that everything is ready to go is not taking into consideration the Government’s requirement for an EIA, for permitting, or for any of the other building permits that they will need to start. They haven’t gotten any of those. I don’t know what the article is so I can’t comment.”
“Is there any timeline from the previous meeting that they said they would submit an EIA?”
“Well the ball is in their court. I think what was given to them was a terms of reference as to what the EIA should contain. How far they’ve gotten with that – I don’t know; they’ve never given a time frame. They were given requirements; nothing new.”
“Would you look into how that information was received?”
“Well I think that company has been known to be a little dramatic, so, I wouldn’t be surprised that they may have prompted a little PR stunt. We have no way of controlling that because we do not control the international media and even to find the basis behind why it was put out is not in our jurisdiction so there’s not really a lot we can do. They know what their requirements are, they know what our requirements are but at the end of it all, it will be the NEAC which is the advisory council for the environment that will make a determination whether their submission meets their criteria or not and I think in this case it may go even beyond that where cabinet will have to give a clearance that they believe that the investment is in the form which they submitted will be acceptable in our development goals but I don’t know what that is yet because we haven’t seen the submission yet. I don’t think an eight star resort is something that exists in the world so it’s like telling me I am losing something that doesn’t exist, I don’t see anything calling me on that. I think we have got some bonifide investors coming in with investments in other areas that are very promising that are a lot less dramatic, so if you ask me if them not investing is a loss, I would hope that they continue to invest but I would hope that they would continue investing in something that would fall within the guidelines that we’ve told them we’re willing to accept.”
Minister of Godwin Hulse sent out a statement to the media via text in which he notes that quote, “it seems that the reference to Puerto Azul at the lighthouse atoll is in reference to the finalization of the purchase of the island in September whereby the new owners would rename the existing hotel as ‘Puerto Azul’”.