66,000 Square foot facility for Union.
TRAYVIS, a construction firm from Martinique has been issued the contract to build a Diagnostic Facility in St. Lucia.
The sod turning ceremony for the National Diagnostic Facility took place on the site at Union on Wednesday June 29. In attendance were Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, Minister for Economic Development Guy Joseph, Minister for Agriculture Ezechiel Joseph, other government officials, technocrats, and representatives of farmer groups on the island. TRAYVIS was represented by its Manager – PhillipeValbon.
The Diagnostic Facility, which will be a 66,000 square feet structure, is valued at 2.5 million Euros. An additional 500,000 Euros has been allocated for the procurement of equipment. The Diagnostic Facility is part of the research and technology component of the ATP-BAM Programme funded by the European Union. This component is designed to assist in enhancing the research and technology capability in the vital agriculture sector.
The National Diagnostic Facility was designed by the St. Lucian firm FDL Consult, which will also supervise construction works. Well-known local contractor, Collins Lynch will serve as Project Manager. Most of the persons who will be employed during the construction phase of the Diagnostic Facility are expected to be from St. Lucia. The Diagnostic Facility is expected to be completed within approximately 15 months. Construction is expected to commence next month.
Project Manager, Collins Lynch, says just over 150 persons are expected to be employed in the construction phase. These will include heavy equipment operators, truckers, masons, plumbers, electricians, painters, tilers, and carpenters. Lynch added that as much of the building materials that are available locally will be purchased on island within EU guidelines, the materials used must be produced within the EU.
Lynch is excited about the job opportunities which will be created as construction of the Diagnostic Facility gets underway, as well as the opportunity to work with a firm like TRAYVIS which has other projects in Martinique and Dominica. He says it opens up new avenues for skills transfer, networking, and job opportunities outside of St. Lucia.
In late June, Minister Ezechiel Joseph, undertook an official visit to Martinique to explore closer collaboration and cooperation in agriculture and other areas. Based on his discussions with President of the Regional Council of Martinique, Serge Letchimy, Joseph says there are lots of opportunities for bilateral cooperation between St. Lucia and Martinique. He said the awarding of the contract to build the Diagnostic Facility to TRAYVIS of Martinique should give added impetus to efforts towards functional cooperation between St. Lucia and Martinique.
Most EU contracts are open to companies within European Union member countries. As an overseas territory of France, Martinique qualifies under the Procurement Guidelines for EU Funded Projects.
On February 4, 2015, Martinique became an Associate Member of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States – OECS. The agreement makes provision for closer cooperation between Martinique and OECS Member States in education, sports, health, air and sea transportation, leisure and boating tourism, arts and culture.