Royal visit costs govt over $600K

The government spent more than $600,000 on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s royal visit in March, according to a preliminary financial expenditure statement released this month.

 “In March 2022, a total of $636,194 was released in the item ‘ceremonial events’ to honor all expenses incurred by the government of The Bahamas in respect of Their Royal Highnesses official visit to The Bahamas during the said period,” the report states.

“The payments were managed by the Office of the Governor-General in consultation with the Secretariat.

“As of May 16th, 2022, approximately 90 percent of the payments has been concluded, with payments totaling $625,186.08.”

The preliminary breakdown shows that $566,828.93 was paid to New Providence businesses and vendors, $50,063.92 was paid to Abaco vendors and $18,107.15 was paid to Grand Bahama vendors.

The government spent $34,657.30 on accommodations at Atlantis; $76,141.96 with Wild Flowers for decor for the royal ball, a school and One Montague; $66,440.50 with Movi Company for large jumbo screens and digital and electronic work at a school, the royal ball and regatta, among other expenses.

According to the report, the government also realized some savings.

“The assistance of corporate Bahamas [in] assisting with the Royal Black-Tie Ball realized a savings of $100,000,” the report states.

Additional savings were also outlined.

Prince William, who is second in line to the British throne; and his wife, Kate Middleton, visited The Bahamas from March 24 to March 26 to commemorate Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee.

They participated in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Regatta off Montagu Beach in eastern New Providence and attended a cultural event, which featured Junkanoo on Bay Street. They also met with a wide range of Bahamian professionals and students on New Providence, Grand Bahama and Abaco.

The report highlighted the media attention The Bahamas received as a result of the royal visit.

“It is difficult to quantify the tremendous benefits of the royal visit to The Commonwealth of The Bahamas,” it states.

“Over 40 international media houses from the UK and international graced our shores and recorded the wonders of The Bahamas, its beauty, charm and warmth of our people.

“…There is no dollar value one can place on the recent visit by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Bahamians demonstrated that as a people we can entertain royalty with class and pride,” the report continued.

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