Premier announces holiday for royal visit

| 21/02/2019 | 51 Comments
Cayman News Service

Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla

(CNS): Premier Alden McLaughlin has declared that Thursday, 28 March 2019, will be a public holiday in honor of the royal visit to the Cayman Islands by Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla. Describing the anticipated arrival of the royal couple next month as a the most important highlight among many for 2019, McLaughlin said the coming year “will be very good for our islands”. The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall will be making a two-day visit to the islands next month at the end of a Caribbean tour that will include the first ever British royal visit to Cuba.

The royals are due to arrive in Cayman on the afternoon of Wednesday, 27 March, and Prince Charles’ first royal duty will be to officially open the new airport facility. Speaking about that anticipated event at the Chamber Legislative Luncheon on Thursday, the premier said, “This will be a proud moment for all who call these islands home.”

Hitting out at the recent critics of the airport cost overruns and delays, the premier said that when the airport expansion was designed, it was based on what was affordable at the time. But since then government finances have improved, offering the chance to make “a very good new airport experience even better”.

McLaughlin said that “broadly half of the additional spend was the result of positive decisions to improve the quality of the redeveloped airport” and that he was “satisfied that decisions …were sensible and affordable”.

Government has also begun a procurement process to introduce new immigration and passport control kiosks, with a pilot of four kiosks to be in place by the end of 2019, with a view to speed up the process at the new airport.

He said the customs intelligence-led approach has already helped move things more quickly for travellers at the airport. Noting this month’s launch of the new Customs and Border Control Agency, the premier pointed to growing customs revenue, even with the new higher duty-free allowance, as well as the increase in the number of successful interdictions by border control officers.

See the premier’s full address in the CNS Library

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Category: Government Finance, Local News, Politics

Comments (51)

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  1. All about Business says:

    Irresponsible decision handed down to the business community – a burden many will have great difficulty managing. Close government for the day sure but don’t make us business owners suffer any more than we already do. Forcing employers to pay double time or to close their businesses while paying staff anyway and lose a full day of productivity because of this visit is a huge injustice. It literally will cost the country’s business community millions in unexpected labour expenses so a handful of onlookers can make the royals feel wanted for a half an hour at the airport. Utter royal nonsense!

  2. Anonymous says:

    some asinine comments on this story, for sure.

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Please have some respect for the royals. there are lots of countries that would be as well off as we are.
    Consider all the Caribbean countries that have gone to the dickens. thank God for the UK

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  4. Anonymous says:

    Cayman should create some nice titles and sell them like residence. There could be big money in titles like Earl of East End or Duchess of Newlands or Marquis de Hog Sty Bay. Also coats of arms. And then you could print stamps with their faces! Aristocracy is big business in the UK, why not here?

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  5. Anonymous says:

    10 43?
    Remember loose means not tight.

    Lose, one o means you cannot find something.

    You can always learn correct spelling of words Bo Bo. Learning is a lifestyle.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Coming to open The Fence?

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Alden pulling a classic McKeeva. He fails to submit responses to the Foreign Affairs Committee for the Queen’s House of Commons; frequently pulpits about colonial-overreach, and independence; and then suddenly declares a holiday so we can line the streets flapping our mini union jacks while his proud cronies drive by with their honorary ribbons and medallions to hob-knob with Royals…

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  8. Anonymous says:

    At what cost to my small business?? If I am closed I can’t make money and I have to pay my staff to sit at home or go to the beach. They wont be on the side of the road waving a flag as they drive by. We don’t need a public holiday just because some Royals are visiting. Who thought that was a good idea? We have to pay two stat holidays in April as it is.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    When we had nothing here they snubbed us. Now that we are affluent and prosperous they want to move in and take over. Who cares about a Queen, King, Prince and Princess, pure rubbish it’s 2019 for God’s sake.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    Has the government not given any thought to the loss of income this will cause to businesses (especially small ones)? Restaurants, supermarkets, retailers will now have to pay staff double time if they want to stay open, the banks will be closed on a day close to month-end and during a payday cycle, any court cases listed for that day will have to be relisted (on an already backed-up court schedule) and I could list so many more inconveniences and unplanned costs to businesses.

    I work in financial services so the holiday does not impact me in any way, but I have empathy for other businesses who will find this completely unnecessary and random holiday to be a burden.

    No disrespect to the royal family, but I would have expected the “Unity” government to consider the repercussions of making this short-sighted decision, both financial and otherwise. But then again, why am I surprised…..

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  11. Kim says:

    This just means workers will also take off Friday and go to Miami.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    LOL! All the slave masters are upset while the slaves are happy! 🙂 Best thing Alden has done since being in office.. #facts

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  13. Anonymous says:

    Happy for the holiday for sure. However as a result of the potential Brexit fall out, the UK is reaching out to anyone who will do business with them, including despots and dictators. That Ladies and Gentlemen is one of the prices of Brexit that they never told you about. I am a Brit, and watching my country go down the path of being a third world non influential country is not nice.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    Will our great premier & the honorable speaker be getting any special award from Prince Charles?

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  15. Anonymous says:

    The trip is really about Cuba

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    • Anonymous says:

      Opening a couple of buildings and being fed watered and fawned over is the occasional work they have to do for jollies in the sun.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    any comment from the chamber of commerce?

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  17. Tom says:

    No we don’t need a public holiday. If people want day off then they can but there some people who want to work.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Piss off Tom.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Tom no one is stopping you from working, the rest of us are glad for a lil holiday. If your workplace is closed I am sure you will be able to find some charity work to do if you are so inclined.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    So in a tight economic market small businesses have to pay another holiday and loose a productive day. What a sham.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    Any consultation with business interests? As much as I respect the royals and look forward to the visit. This is a slap in the face to small business and will take $2000 out of my pocket.

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  20. Anonymous says:

    Everyone should stay home as a protest.

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  21. Anonymous says:

    This only makes a difference to office and government staff. Do you think shops, construction sites, gardeners and restaurants will close to give their staff a day off to see Charles and Camilla?

    We live in an increasingly polarized society.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Some will stay open, but every employee will get an extra days pay from their employer, regardless if they work or not, make a trip to see them, or at minimum raise a drink to them.

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  22. Anonymous says:

    please explain why?

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  23. Anonymous says:

    pure and utter nonsense.

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  24. Anonymous says:

    Please visit more often!

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  25. Anonymous says:

    I certainly hope this does not mean the schools will have to stay open into the July “contingency days” to make up for the lost instruction time.

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  26. Anonymous says:

    Excellent – Leeds v Cas Tigers, days’ vacation not required!! COYF’s.

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  27. Anonymous says:

    Finally the Royal family is good for something.

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    • Progress says:

      PPM the WORLDS GREATEST team! Crown KING ALDEN. Great Britain has protected these islands for Centuries if you can understand History in the beginning. Better government better country.

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