New prime minister of Dominica to resume passport sales
Finance Minister Ambrose George said during a radio interview that the
would resume but with changes to ensure that the Caribbean nation's citizenship
"does not fall into the hands of criminals." He would not elaborate on the
Dominica's Economic Citizenship program, suspended in January, allowed
international investors to receive citizenship by paying a $50,000 fee.
Such programs have been criticized by other countries. Last year, a U.S.
Department report said Dominica had reportedly sold citizenship to up to 300
Russians, "increasing suspicions of Russian money-laundering" on the island.
Controversy over the program helped Douglas unseat former Prime Minister
Edison James in the January elections.
But George said Wednesday the program had brought badly needed income to
the country. Dominica benefited from "aspects of the program which targeted
funds for certain development projects," he said. Since the Douglas government
took office, some housing and road projects have been suspended for lack of