Sunday, Mar 01st

LATEST:
You are here: Islands Islands News Ys: Dutch Caribbean isles must foster trade among themselves

Best_of_2015_587x57_Results

Ys: Dutch Caribbean isles must foster trade among themselves

~ Suggests formation of kingdom business bureau ~

DAWN BEACH--Former Netherlands Antilles Prime Minister Etienne Ys minced no words when it came to exploring and encouraging trade and business in the Dutch Caribbean, when he said Wednesday that the biggest problem the islands face in progressing economically is their lack of communication.

"The islands are not talking business to each other. We don't have commercial treaties. We don't encourage business with each other," Ys stated at the 18th InterExpo Congress at The Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach and Spa.

The former prime minister decried plans by Curacao and St. Maarten to split the Central Bank of Curacao and St. Maarten and possibly create to new currencies for the countries. He classified this pending move as "making doing business more difficult" for investors interested in the two countries.

To achieve more and re-invigorate trade, Ys said economic cooperation among the islands, with the Netherlands and other countries "must be a fix item" on the agenda for all kingdom partners and must take the form of public/private partnership.

He suggested that the partnership takes the form of a "Holland-Dutch Caribbean BV". This will serve as a bureau, similar to a chamber of commerce that will promote international commercial cooperation between and through the countries of the kingdom. The bureau must be politically neutral and give special attention to small and medium enterprises and focus on building relationships with Latin America.

It's time for more action on creating and sustaining trade linkages, he said. "I'm advocating for public and private sectors to sit together."

He pointed out that much can be accomplished when the islands come together, such as the constitutional changes realised in October 2010.

Ys' presentation centred on "Economic Cooperation within the Kingdom - a win-win approach."

He expounded on the Dutch seeing the islands as a hub to the Americas more than 300 years ago, a hub function that still exists, but is not fully utilised in present day with the Dutch Caribbean move away from trade and commerce to development aid in the past 150 years.

There has been "no attention" to trade, particularly in the past decade by the Dutch Caribbean islands. Ys said the islands and the Netherlands have talked about everything from constitutional change to fiscal stability. "But, we have stopped talking trade."

He questioned if the neglect of trade had to do with the Netherlands no longer being a viable international trade country as it was in the past, or whether the islands are no longer fit to be a gateway any longer. Neither of these statements is true, he countered, saying that the Netherlands is still one of the top 10 trade countries in the world, the fifth top exporter, the seventh importer and the 11th international investor, and the islands are still a gateway to the Americas and can become Latin America's hub to Europe.

"Why aren't we talking about cooperation ... We have a partner," Ys, in his customary direct way, told the gathering of business and government representatives from across the kingdom.

The islands are well situated, have good telecoms, rule of law, are part of the Dutch Kingdom, have a well-educated labour force, and are high-income economies among others. "I think the islands are still a hub for the Netherlands and Latin America."

Ys pointed out that building on that hub function is more important now, with the countries closest to the Dutch Caribbean islands "becoming rich." Those potential markets include Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru.

The Netherlands is "not hitting Latin America enough" as its major partners are Brazil and Argentina. However, that's poised to change with the current Dutch Government international business policy focusing on intensifying trade with Brazil, Colombia and Mexico by helping Dutch small and medium enterprises to go international. The Dutch Good Growth Fund will finance these ventures via loans, guarantees and equity participation.

Image
Attempted robbery suspects arrested
Saturday, 28 February 2015
MAHO--Two men were arrested following an attempted armed robbery of two tourists near Sonesta Maho... Read more...
Application period for Carnival vending starts Monday March 2
Saturday, 28 February 2015
PHILIPSBURG--The Department of Economic Licences has announced that people interested in vending... Read more...
Image
Thousands march in Haiti over Dominican racism
Friday, 27 February 2015
PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti--Two weeks after a Haitian man was lynched in the Dominican Republic,... Read more...
Image
Jamaica decriminalises marijuana in small amounts with newly passed ‘ganja’ Bill
Thursday, 26 February 2015
KINGSTON, Jamaica--The Jamaica parliament gave the green light Tuesday night to the amendments of... Read more...
Image
US, Cuba make progress, no date for diplomatic ties
Friday, 27 February 2015
WASHINGTON--Cuba and the United States held a second round of talks on Friday toward normalizing... Read more...
Eight dead in Missouri shooting spree
Friday, 27 February 2015
TYRONE--A man armed with a handgun went on a house-to-house shooting spree in a rural Missouri... Read more...
Image
Russian opposition leader Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow
Friday, 27 February 2015
MOSCOW--Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov, an outspoken critic of President Vladimir... Read more...
Image
Mexico captures most wanted drug kingpin
Friday, 27 February 2015
MEXICO CITY--Mexico captured its most wanted drug lord on Friday, former primary school teacher... Read more...
Image
India finds itself in "sweet spot" of lower deficits, more growth
Saturday, 28 February 2015
NEW DELHI--India can increase investment to drive economic growth without borrowing more, a key... Read more...
Image
Bombardier's CSeries 300 jet takes to skies, outlook cloudy
Saturday, 28 February 2015
TORONTO--Bombardier Inc launched a test flight of its CS300 jet on Friday, the larger version of... Read more...
Image
Marigot cemetery
Sunday, 01 March 2015
Dear Editor, It is one thing to cry out they have taken away our culture from us, but it is quite... Read more...
Image
Trying to accentuate the positive
Sunday, 01 March 2015
Dear Queenie, My girlfriend and I have been friends since high school and she’s been my... Read more...
Image
Mighty Terry inspires Chelsea to Cup glory
Sunday, 01 March 2015
ENGLAND --John Terry embellished his status to Chelsea fans as "captain, leader, legend" by scoring... Read more...
Bottas wraps up testing with Williams on top
Sunday, 01 March 2015
BARCELONA-- Formula One wrapped up pre-season testing on Sunday with Valtteri Bottas top of the... Read more...
Image
Leonard Nimoy, Star Trek's Mr. Spock, dies at 83
Friday, 27 February 2015
LOS ANGELES--Leonard Nimoy, who won fame and fans with his portrayal of logic-bound, half-alien Mr.... Read more...
Image
Third calf born to endangered killer whale population in US Pacific Northwest
Friday, 27 February 2015
SEATTLE--A healthy, days-old orca calf has been spotted with a pod of killer whales in the open... Read more...
Image
Plans for a Community Garden taking shape in Indigo Bay
Friday, 27 February 2015
By Lisa Davis-Burnett When land is at a premium, economic considerations tend to dominate.... Read more...
Image
Tonight’s the Night!
Friday, 27 February 2015
~ Karibbean Jazz Summit at Port de Plaisance ~   Come out to the tent at Port de Plaisanceat... Read more...
Editorial - No reason not to
Friday, 27 February 2015
The suggestion of China’s Consul General to the Dutch Caribbean Chen Qiman for St. Maarten to... Read more...
Editorial - Sooner rather than later
Thursday, 26 February 2015
A number of persons interested in the topic tuned into radio or television yesterday morning to... Read more...
Image
Saturday Feb. 28, 2015
Friday, 27 February 2015
Image
Friday Feb. 27, 2015
Friday, 27 February 2015
Notices February 28
Friday, 27 February 2015
Target Practice Commander of the Voluntary Corps of Sint Maarten (VKS) will be having a target... Read more...
Notices February 27
Thursday, 26 February 2015
February 23 thru 27 EVANGELISTIC SERVICES Place: Good News Baptist Church, St. Peters Time: Sunday... Read more...