Four countries consultation on mutual regulation yields agreement on main issues

January 16, 2023 2:15 pm

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten—The following is a joint press statement provided by the four Kingdom partners, Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs of Sint Maarten; Prime Minister Evelyn Wever - Croes, of Aruba; Prime Minister Gilmar Pisas representing Curacao; and State Secretary of Kingdom Relations and Digitalization, Alexandra van Huffelen, representing the Netherlands:

Over the past two days, we have had constructive discussions on the manner in which we wish to cooperate with each together in the Kingdom. This cooperation that is based on equality, ownership and mutual trust, which corresponds with the way we view our common future. A cooperation that should lead to the implementation of reforms that contribute to the resilience and sustainable development of the Countries.

The positions of the four countries in the Kingdom have been shared in a transparent and open atmosphere. These positions reaffirm the importance of the reforms as laid down in the Country Packages. The purpose of these discussions was to make further agreements on the manner in which we are going to arrange cooperation with each other in the implementation of the Country Packages.

We have been successful in reaching an outline agreement on a mutual regulation. This agreement replaces the proposed consensus Kingdom Act on COHO (Caribbean Body for Reform and Development). This proposed Kingdom Law was submitted to the Parliaments and the Second Chamber where it was critically analyzed. Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten have taken the initiative and presented a proposal which was the point of the discussions and over the past two days. The aim was to arrive at a mutual regulation, wherein, agreements about the working method, the manner of reporting, the support by the Netherlands and the duration of the regulation have been laid down. Thereby giving context to the equitable relations within the Kingdom.

Over the past two days, we have worked hard to further detail the agreements. During the coming period, the agreements will be further elaborated upon by our technical teams. It is expected that by the beginning of March 2023 a final mutual regulation will be signed.

The four countries have agreed that in February 2023 consultations will commence on the loans provided for by the Netherlands during the COVID-19 crisis for the CAS countries, that will become due on October 10th, 2023.

In addition, the status regarding the dispute settlement regulation was discussed. The Countries are awaiting the positions of the Parliaments and the Second Chamber on this point. The topic of the democratic deficit and the Van Raak motion were discussed. Having consideration for the, the countries have agreed that a Kingdom Conference will organized these and other topics.