International developers praise Vincentian workers
February 15, 2013

International developers praise Vincentian workers

The work ethic and skills of Vincentian workers have come in for praise by international developers in Canouan.{{more}}

During a media tour, last Friday, of the 110 berth marina and boutique hotel project being constructed on Canouan, CCA general manager Elena Korach said the men and women who were trained to perform certain tasks, have impressed their employers, and have been lauded by visitors.

“When we have our guests and clients come down, and when they look at the quality of work, many of them are asking where we get our workers from, and they look at me stunned when I say we are bringing them in from St Vincent.

“You are going to see hand in hand on the resort, local people and expatriates working, and it’s not that you are going to see local people only mixing mortar; you are going to see them laying marble, doing mosaics, you are going to see them mounting special doors and windows and all the technical services are being done by Vincentians. This is a unique opportunity.”

Korach said that Vincentian employees are usually ready and willing to learn new skills and techniques, and are trained by persons who come to the island to work and impart their knowledge.

More than 1,000 Vincentians are estimated to be currently employed on CCA projects; with 700 in the construction industry, and the rest in the service industry.

Of the US$220 million allocated to the development of the projects, Korach estimated that US$20 million would go to salaries.

Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, commenting on the issue, said it is in the best interest of the developers to find, train and use local skilled workers.

“If they find the local skill here, it is cheaper than if you bring in a man,” he said. In some cases they have to bring in someone from outside…. So, we have this partnership with them, that only persons who are absolutely necessary for the enterprise coming from outside that you can bring from outside. Sometimes you may hear somebody say well, they have 30 foreigners in Canouan, but thirty of which number?” Gonsalves asked.

“What is important that we also impress on them, is that they have to take cognizance of the Education Revolution, and people with training and so forth. “They may not have the experience in the particular area, but you have to give them the opportunity to come on board, learn, see how things operate and see their professionalism, and you get to know fairly quickly whether they got an aptitude for whatever they have been taken for,” Gonsalves added.(JJ)