Grisha: “Concerns and suggestions regarding viability of taxi sector need to be addressed by Government”

July 31, 2023 10:48 am

Member of Parliament Grisha Heyliger-Marten recently met with the President of the Dutch St. Maarten Taxi Association, Ms. Maya Friday, and the President of the Airport Taxi Association, Mr. Andre Royer.

In a press release issued on Sunday afternoon, Heyliger-Marten stated that following the meeting, she sent a letter to the Chairlady of Parliament’s Committee of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport, and Telecommunication (“TEATT Committee”), Hon. Angelique Roumou, to convene a meeting with both taxi associations.

“On May 22nd, 2023, I sent a letter to the Hon. Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport, and Telecommunication with questions related to the issuing of new taxi and bus licenses. Parliament received those answers from the Minister on July 10th, 2023”, Heyliger-Marten stated.

“Based on the letter received from the Minister, I subsequently sat down with both taxi associations to get their feedback. During this meeting, both Presidents shared a number of concerns and suggestions related to the status of the taxi sector on the island.

Seeing that we are a tourism-based island, it is important for Parliament to hear directly from the representative of sector what these concerns and suggestions are, particularly in relation to the answers recently provided by the Hon. Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport, and Telecommunication”, according to Heyliger-Marten.

“With that in mind, I requested the Chairlady of the TEATT Committee to invite both taxi associations to a meeting, so that they can share their concerns, suggestions, and opinions on said answers from the Minister with Parliament. It is my hope that the Government will take the concerns and suggestions into thoughtful consideration for the benefit of the viability of the entire sector and the economy of our nation in general”, Heyliger-Marten said.

“Based on my meeting with the taxi associations, it is clear to me that the Minister of TEATT did not consider it important enough to meet with these two key stakeholders before making major decisions. That is very unfortunate, and I hope that by meeting with them and eventually the Minister, Parliament can contribute towards the issues within the sector being resolved”, Heyliger-Marten concluded.