FALMOUTH, Trelawny -
Transport and Works Minister Mike Henry says the development of the $7.5 billion pier in this historic town, to accommodate the Royal Caribbean's Genesis cruise ship, will create 1700 jobs, 500 of which will be permanent.
"Land-side facilities which will flow from the development of the pier will provide 500 permanent jobs when completed. But in terms of the actual implementation will see to the employment of some 1500 to 1700 persons," Henry declared at the official opening of the new $9-million fishing village in Falmouth.
The new village which includes two buildings, was prompted by an agreement between the Government of Jamaica through the Port Authority and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. That agreement signalled the development of a new pier to accommodate the New Genesis class vessels which is scheduled to dock here next year in December.
Several businesses which fall within the periphery of the proposed site of the pier development are marked for displacement. The fishing village is the first facility to be relocated to facilitate the development of the shipping pier, expected to host the megaliner and other vessels.
In the meantime, with growing concern over the delayed start to the construction of the pier, Noel Hylton, chairman of the Port Authority of Jamaica, has guaranteed that work will commence next month.
"The contractor is mobilising now and I expect the ship with the equipment and some of the materials to arrive here maybe in another month and I expect the dredge to arrive here sometimes toward the middle of August. So I think we should start in the middle to the third week of August," said Hylton.
He further noted that the construction of the pier and the land-side, which he explained will consist of restaurants and shops, will be completed by November 2010.
In the meantime, Minister Henry says funding for the project is in place.
"Funding is in place funding is not a problem. The only way funding can be a problem now is if we run into any extra work. But in terms of everything that has been designed and structured and put foward all the funding is in place," remarked Henry.