The San Juan Daily Star
‘No room for xenophobia’: Governor defends investors from outside PR
By The Star Staff
Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia had sharp words on Tuesday for those who he said promote an anti-foreign discourse so that foreigners do not invest in buying property or establishing businesses in Puerto Rico.
“Some people, what they do is criticize that people come from outside Puerto Rico to invest in Puerto Rico, including to rent properties,” the governor said at a news conference. “To those I say that in Puerto Rico there is no room for xenophobia. That we can’t be saying if you weren’t born here and you’re not from here you’re not welcome. The moment that happens in Puerto Rico, it is the beginning of the end.”
“Our border has to be open and whoever wants to come here to Puerto Rico to reside and invest here within the law, is more than welcome,” he added. “To [have] this kind of xenophobic and racist attitude is out of place.”
Pierluisi was referring to complaints made by residents of several communities, such as Loíza Street in San Juan, that people from outside the community have monopolized the purchase of properties to convert them into short-term rentals.
The governor said he favors the regulation of this rental model and that several bills in the Legislature are aimed at regulating that type of business.
Pierluisi made his remarks after concluding a meeting with members of his economic cabinet.