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JEWELRY BILL TO GO TO PRESIDENT

A bill to extend the benefits of the watch industry to manufacturers of fine jewelry in the Virgin Islands was passed by the House of Representatives Monday and has been forwarded it to President Bill Clinton for his signature.
The bill, which was introduced by Delegate Donna Christian-Christensen in September 1997, would provide tariff credits against wages paid by VI watch producers and expand it to include the production of jewelry.
The bill, which has Clinton's support, according to Christiansen, could generate well-paying jobs in the currently stagnant economy, create new economic opportunities to attract new investment in the V.I. and provide greater flexibility to the existing watch manufacturers which could help ensure the survival of these manufacturing operations.
"This is a day which I have been looking forward to for a long time because of what passage of this bill will mean for St. Croix and the entire Virgin Islands. With the development of a new industry for the manufacturing of fine jewelry, hundreds of new jobs will be created on the island of St. Croix," Christensen said.

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