29 May 2015
Treasury Minister, Senator Alan Maclean, made the following statement in response to an announcement from the States of Jersey Development Company that work is due to start on the first building of the Esplanade Quarter:
"This is very positive news for the Island and its economy. The decision by UBS, a leading financial services business, to take up this lease means that the States of Jersey Development Company (SOJDC) can go ahead with the first phase of the Esplanade Quarter.
“When the SOJDC was established in 2010, the States Assembly agreed that the Esplanade Quarter should be developed as a centre for financial services. SOJDC is taking a phased approach, with work starting on each building when enough tenants are signed up to make each building financially viable. Phasing the development in this way allows SOJDC to be more flexible and to construct a financial business centre that will suit Jersey’s needs. The need to have pre-lets in place before construction begins was a requirement set by the States Assembly to mitigate risk. SOJDC has the required pre-lets for Building 4, which already has all the necessary planning and other permissions, and now construction work can start.
“Jersey needs to offer Grade A office space if we are to attract top quality businesses who provide valuable employment for local people and income to run our public services. Taxpayers stand to benefit from the new offices – both from the taxes paid by companies and employees, and from the profits made by SOJDC which will be used to regenerate areas of St Helier.
"No taxpayers’ money is being used in the construction, as SOJDC is a limited company and is borrowing from banks, like any other developer. As with any commercial lending, the bank undertakes its own due diligence on the viability of its lending.
"SOJDC has appointed local firm Camerons as the main contractor to undertake the construction of this building. Camerons are committed to retaining as much construction activity on-island as possible. UK and European sub-contractors will be required for specialist tasks. This announcement supports the growing confidence shown in recent statistical surveys – that our economy is turning a corner and businesses are feeling optimistic about the future.”