The state secretary for Kingdom relations Raymond Knops says that Curacao, Aruba and Sint Maarten will not receive new loans if they don’t firstly comply with all the conditions attached to the second tranche of monies that should reach these countries. He said there is a political agreement on the requirements set by the Netherlands for the third installment. State Secretary Knops made this clear in in his answering of questions from the Second Chamber in the Dutch Parliament.
The answer shows that the Dutch Government is not prepared to back down on conditions set, one of which is the establishment of a Caribbean reform entity, entirely under Dutch control. This has been the sticking point of contention with the Islands and the most controversial part of the agreement. Knops maintained that the organization of the entity is funded with Dutch tax payer’s money and the financial and other resources to be performed by the entity are entirely provided by Dutch Citizens. That is why the entity has also been designed as a Dutch independent administrative body. In view of this choice says Knops, it is easy to explain that the members of this entity are appointed by the Minister of Interior and Kingdom Relations.
Raymond Knops denies that the constitutional autonomy of the countries are being affected. In the cabinet’s opinion, the powers assigned in the proposal to the Caribbean reform entity, an independent administrative body under Dutch law, is sufficiently safeguarding this autonomy. He noted that the entity will not take over any legal and regulatory powers from the national bodies of Aruba, Curacao and Sint Maarten, but will only be able to act in a supportive and supervisory manner.
He added, that time is running out for the countries. The funds from the first two tranches have largely been spent and the bottom of the Island’s treasury is beginning to show. The Kingdom Council of Ministers are to meet again on September 11th 2020.