Premier Andrew Fahie has contended that there will be no job losses once the territory merges its air and seaport authorities.
The merger will be done through the The Virgin Islands
Air and Seaports Act, 2021, which passed in the House of Assembly (HOA) late last night.
The Act will combine the BVI Airports Authority (BVIAA) and the BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) into one single entity — the BVI Air and Seaports Authority.
“There will be a need for a transition team to merge the two entities and in the process, no jobs will be lost,” the Premier assured repeatedly in the House.
said the move is expected to bring some level of synergy to the work being done by the two statutory bodies. He further stated that this added synergy would offer better efficiency and effectiveness to the residents of the territory.
With a single board there will now be a foundation for a shared vision for all the territory’s ports of entry, the Premier said.
He also argued that there is a need for common standards, as well as a properly branded and shared approach to tourism and visitor experience for all arrivals to the BVI.
“It should not be that if you arrive at the airport, it is one experience and if you come through the seaport, it is like a different destination,” Premier Fahie
He added: “There should be consistency, and this consistency would come when you have a common vision, a common management structure, a common management theme and a deliberate synergy in how things are done.”
With the merger, there will also be greater synergy in the decision-making process on entry for both entities with regard to the Customs, Immigration and police departments, the Premier said.
The Premier further noted that there is still a long way to go for implementation since there is some legislation that needs to be rescinded before the merger comes into force.