Published On: Wed, Feb 27th, 2013

No decision on CBCS for now, Hodge tells Plasterk

Central BankTHE HAGUE – A definite decision will not be taken at this stage on the future of the Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten (CBCS) but Curaçao Prime Minister Daniel Hodge did discuss the inadequate functioning of the institution with Dutch Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk on Monday.

Hodge informed Plasterk during a meeting at the Ministry of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations BZK that the Curaçao Government will evaluate the monetary union with St. Maarten based on the developments of the past two years, as is stated in the Governing Accord.

According to Hodge, Plasterk did not object to such evaluation. "The Minister is not against this because everyone can see that the CBCS has not functioned properly since October 10, 2010," said the Prime Minister after the meeting.

Aside from the evaluation, an operational audit will be carried out at the CBCS in the near future. For now no definite decision will be taken on the future of the CBCS, it was stated in a press release of the Curaçao Government.

Plasterk and Hodge also discussed the reprioritising of funds that have already been reserved as part of various existing cooperation programmes. The Prime Minister asked for a shift of priorities in the Social Economic Initiative (SEI), the Institutional Strengthening of the Administration IVB, the Education and Youth Cooperation Programme OSJP and the Safety Plan Netherlands Antilles PVNA.

Hodge pointed out to Plasterk that it was necessary to update the priorities of these programmes so they can be matched with the current needs. The programmes were developed and initiated in 2008 in anticipation of the new constitutional structure whereby Curaçao attained country status on October 10, 2010.

It was agreed that the Curaçao Government will draft proposals after which negotiations for a reprioritising of the funds can start. Hodge said that during Monday's meeting Plasterk expressed willingness to work with Curaçao on this.

Hodge, who was joined by Curaçao Minister of Economic Affairs Steven Martina and Minister Plenipotentiary of Curaçao in The Hague Roy Pieters, updated Plasterk on the country's financial situation, the legislation process regarding the basic general health insurance, the changes to the allowance for the elderly AOV and the Turn-over Tax OB differentiation. He confirmed that the transition cabinet is more or less on schedule in executing these issues.

The Prime Minister further indicated to Plasterk that he would like to see a follow-up to the first Kingdom Conference, held in December 2011, in the first half of 2013. Aruba is hosting the second Kingdom Conference, which initially was planned for mid-2012, but has not taken place so far. A definite date has not yet been set.

Hodge would like to see a broader agenda for the Kingdom Conference. In his opinion not only current political issues should be discussed at that conference, but there should also be room for profound talks about the functioning of the Kingdom. He said Plasterk said he was supportive of this view. Hodge said that generally the meeting with the Minister was "very constructive."

On Tuesday, the Prime Minister attended a meeting of the Permanent Committee for Kingdom Relations of the First Chamber of the Dutch Parliament, and on Wednesday he will be the guest of the Kingdom Relations Committee of the Second Chamber.

Source: The Daily Herald

Click Tag(s) for Related Articles: