SXM Council of Ministers meets delegates of Dutch Senate

SXM Council of Ministers meets delegates of Dutch Senate
Photo: Government of St. Maarten

PHILIPSBURG- On Saturday, February 26, the Council of Ministers welcomed the members of the Committee of Kingdom Relations of the Dutch Senate to a meeting in the Government Administration Building. 

The delegation consisted of 15 persons and was escorted by the Dutch Representative of the Netherlands in Philipsburg (VNP), Mr. Chris Johnson.  Both parties concluded that it was a fruitful and open conversation about various discussion points, including the relations within the Kingdom along with the COHO and the 12.5% personnel-related cost-cutting measures. 

The visit of the Senate was added to a slew of recent positively experienced mainly in-person visits of which the last one being the recent visit of the State Secretary Van Huffelen to Sint Maarten. The Senate was mostly interested in ways and means to continue to strengthen and foster relationships between the Dutch and the Sint Maarten Government, and how the Senate could assist Sint Maarten in this process. Having a better understanding of the historical, demographical, financial/economic, and political reality on the island is one of the foundation blocks of being able to build a more trustworthy partnership. 


The Council of Ministers reconfirmed its commitment to the national reform measures and indicated to the delegation that most of these were already included in its National Development Plan. However, the potential of the island needs to be more highlighted and better profiling of the strengths of Sint Maarten within the Caribbean through politics should occur. Upon request, clarification was provided regarding the absence of capital expenditures to invest in the prison and financial management, though approved yet not forthcoming. The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020, the same period that the current Council of Ministers assumed office, further negatively impacted the absence of the approved funds, resulting in no financial means for capital investments. 

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