Government house, planned for 2021, to accommodate Seychelles' ministerial offices
The Seychelles Pension Fund opened the 'Maison Collet' which houses the first multi-storey car park and some government offices in Victoria in 2016. (Seychelles Nation)
(Seychelles News Agency) - The first phase of a government house to accommodate ministerial offices is expected to be built in Seychelles by 2021.
Principal Secretary for Finance Patrick Payet said that the decision to construct a government house was taken during this week’s cabinet of ministers meeting.
Payet said the need for the building arises from how much is spent by the government to rent offices each year.
“A lot of debate around this year’s budget address had to do with the amount of money the government pays private sector as rent for offices. We did an assessment which showed that around $9 million is paid annually,” explained Payet.
Payet said “an exercise was done to see how many ministries and government budget dependent entities were renting from the private sector. We then decided to get the cabinet’s approval for the construction of a government house.”
The principal secretary added that a plot of land has been identified at Ile du Port – a manmade island on the outskirts of Victoria - the capital city, for the project, which will be done in phases.
“The plot is around 17,000 square metres and is currently being used as a depot by the Seychelles Public Transport Corporation. It is ideal as we feel we can put three to four blocks to be used as government offices,” said Payet.
|The plot at the SPTC bus depot will be used to build three to four blocks. (Salifa Karapetyan) Photo License: CC-BY|
Currently, there are around 12 ministries and government agencies renting office space.
Payet said that “once constructed the approximately $26 million project will be able to accommodate all of these offices.”
The principal secretary said that the government is still finalising plans with regards to the financing of the project, but he said that this can be done either through a public-private partnership or a grant.
“While we wait for the finances we have presented a concept to the cabinet. This is which ministries will be housed at the building. We will decide how much space to allocate to them as well,” Payet said.
Payet said that since a lot of office space is being rented in buildings owned by the Seychelles Pension Fund, “the Ministry of Finance will need to work with the fund to prepare them for the implications.”
The Seychelles Pension Fund is a corporate body set up to provide for the financial security of members by the payment of a monthly retirement pension for life.
The corporate body also makes the investment as a second source of income, sustaining the Fund to meet its obligations to its members. Currently, it has buildings and apartments on Mahe, Praslin, and La Digue - the three main islands of Seychelles, an archipelago in the western the Indian Ocean.