Netherlands Vs Former Antilles

KNOPS It’s His Way, Or The Highway concerning COHO

KNOPS It’s His Way, Or The Highway concerning COHO

Knops after St. Maarten visit: ‘there is no other way than the one we advocate’

According to outgoing State Secretary Raymond Knops of Kingdom Relations, the Princess Juliana International Airport is the most important project of the reconstruction of St. Maarten after Hurricane Irma in 2017. The Hague has turned off the money tap because the money would not have been well spent.

The government did not intervene when there were problems with good governance of the airport. We have discussed this and the government has now said that they will now intervene. ” Knops said this after his visit to the island.

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Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs of Sint Maarten said in parliament on Thursday that her meeting with Knops has not paid off. Jacobs does not agree with the decision to end already promised liquidity support.

KNOPS It’s His Way, Or The Highway concerning COHO

Money tap closed again
Knops visited Sint-Maarten between 18 and 20 May, a week after he had announced in a letter that he would stop financial aid due to maladministration at the airport. That money concerns a fifth tranche of liquidity support to deal with the problems caused by the corona pandemic.

‘The Netherlands keeps stopping loans to push the Hague agenda’
For the second time in a short time, the Netherlands is turning off the money tap for ailing Sint Maarten. Prime Minister Jacobs believes that The Hague is constantly changing the rules of the game for aid and wanted a solution this week: “We must ensure that the livelihoods of people who depend on the Sint-Maarten government is not endangered by the persistent actions of The Hague. ” Read more here .

Good governance is an essential part of the airport’s relaunch, according to Knops. ” Everything is about good governance. The Netherlands sends tax money to help Sint Maarten, which must be well spent. ”

KNOPS It’s His Way, Or The Highway concerning COHO

Too late
Just before his departure from Sint Maarten, on May 20, Knops said he had a meeting with Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs and the Minister of Finance Ardwell Irion. They have acknowledged that they intervened too late in the situation around the airport. But we want to see a plan first. Schiphol is also involved in this. They have the expertise, they will also assess it. On that basis, we will consider whether that liquidity support will still be provided. ”

Knops continues: “The core of the problem is that Sint Maarten is an autonomous country, also on the basis of the Statute. But in fact they are temporarily no longer autonomous, because they are dependent on the Netherlands. ”

And also: ‘I don’t expect a very quick breakthrough, because a number of things still really have to be arranged. We have a Council of Ministers of the Kingdom on May 28, the subject is on the agenda there anyway. Then we will also assess whether Sint-Maarten has complied with the implementation of that good governance by then. ”

Because, according to Knops, one thing is very clear: “There is no other way than the one we advocate. I also conveyed that very clearly to St. Maarten. The problems need to be addressed and resolved. ”

When asked whether Knops would return as Secretary of State for Kingdom Relations, he said ‘that is the Million Dollar Question’. According to him, this depends on many factors. ” I am very result-oriented. There is still a lot of work to be done. In any case, I’m not done yet, but we’ll see. ” is the latest site in the Network,

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