Minister of Public Works, Housing and Land - The Hon. Alexis Jeffers

Monique Washington

Nevis Housing and Land Development Cooperation has secured four pieces of equipment that will allow the cost of building housing and roads not to increase in the near future.

The NHLDC purchased  a Terex Finley  I-100 impactor crusher , anaconda three deck screen , 3 ½ yards frontend loader , 29 ton excavator to the value of US$600,000 (EC$1.6 million). The equipment produces material such as crushed stone, quarry sand , bedding material and rough based material as well as  produces around 200 yards per day and is being sold less than other distributors.

On location at the Government’s quarry at New River on Thursday, Minister of  Public Works, Housing and Land the Hon. Alexis Jeffers said the quarry is not trying to compete with private sector but instead is using the materials for the benefit of the people of Nevis.

“We feel we have resources here that will last for years to come and instead of having it sitting here and having it utilized by foreign entities or persons who are not in the position to make proper use and to bring meaningful usage to this product we have decided to do so,” he said. So far, it has been productive.

Mr. Jeffers said the quarry has already began filling requests from companies in St. Kitts and in the near future will be able to export material to neighboring islands and by a 1- 1 ½ “yield some returns”

“Over 450 yards has been sold to a business entity in St Kitts. We have approached various markets to let them know that we are capable of supplying material necessary to make concert or any other construction product. We would like to see the end to the importation of aggregate from overseas because we are capable here on the island we have a number of quarries on the island that is complimenting to what is there. We do believe that can sustain the market on the island of Nevis,” Jeffers said.

In 2013 the NHLDC took over the Government quarry from a Jamaican company.

“This quarry was operated by a company that was construing roads. They were in complete control of the resources here, I want to be specific, the resources of the people of Nevis,” he said.

Jeffers said The Nevis Housing and Land Development is now in a position to offer materials.

“We have supplied public works, supplied water department and have done significant business with the private sector. We will see the  cost of construction  being maintained as low as possible and  we won’t see any further increases, because of the cost of importation of some of these aggregates,” Jeffers concluded.