As the demand for construction workers continues to increase in the British Virgin Islands, the cost for construction-related services is also increasing.
Residents who are repairing or rebuilding homes and business facilities are starting to complain about these reported rising prices.
Some residents are reporting that since the hurricanes, the daily cost to retain construction services have increased considerably and have even doubled in some instances.
“The cost of construction is increasing rapidly,” decried one resident while speaking at a public meeting in Cane Garden Bay this week.
He explained: “Say, for instance, John Doe was working at The Moorings and he got laid off. He was working for $40 or $50 per day. All of a sudden he goes to the college, takes a course for five months, and he becomes a $180-a-day man, and the people are paying these prices.”
Government ‘working on’ solution
Residents in need of property repairs have been echoing similar woes and are calling on government to intervene.
“I do agree that we have to look at the labour cost of the country,” said Premier Dr D Orlando Smith while responding to the concerns this week.
He pointed to an impending piece of legislation as a solution to the issue.
“What we are looking at now is what you call Consumer Protection Legislation which that (the problem) will come under and I do have a draft which I received a couple days ago to review,” Dr Smith said.
Residents have said they welcome the long-promised legislation.
However, many have grown impatient and are clamouring for immediate relief from the pressure being placed on their pockets.
Reports of rising labour costs come just two months after insurance expert Michael Fusco warned residents to brace for increased prices on local goods and services.
At the time, he said prices would increase based on a phenomenon known as ‘demand surge’.
Effectively, demand surge is a process resulting in a higher cost to repair property damage after large disasters, than the price to repair the same damage after a small disaster.
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