Chinese firm to invest $1 billion in Antigua mega-resort development

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Chinese company Yida International Investment Group will invest approximately $1 billion in a mega-resort development on Antigua, to be built on 1,600 acres previously owned by disgraced US financier Allen Stanford.

The Singulari project calls for multiple hotels and what is being billed as the Caribbean’s largest casino, plus residences, a school, a hospital, marinas, golf courses, an entertainment district and a horse track.

Construction is slated to begin early next year, according to a notice posted on Antigua and Barbuda’s official government website.

Job fairs will be held this fall to ensure that locals are given priority for 200 positions later this year when the land is prepared for development. Another 800 jobs will open up when construction starts.

The deal comes on the heels of a recent agreement by Sheik Taniq bin Faisal Al Qassemi, a member of the ruling family of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates, to invest in a $120 million hotel in the village of Old Road on Antigua’s southwestern coast.

Both projects follow the government’s promise to bring investments that will provide jobs, help reduce debt and reinforce the economy.

Stanford was once Antigua’s largest employer. A dual citizen of Antigua and the U.S., Stanford was convicted of fraud in 2012 and is serving a 110-year sentence in a Florida prison.