THE HAGUE, WILLEMSTAD – Chairman of Kingdom Affairs in the Dutch Parliament Jan Paternotte has committed to relaying the sentiments of Kingdom partners that swift action is needed in the interest of the survival of the people of the islands in the face of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.
On Thursday, March 19, the Chairpersons of the Parliaments of Curaçao and St. Maarten as well as the chairs of the Kingdom Relations Committees of the three countries within the Kingdom met via video conference to discuss the need for economic and labor stimulus.
“While much of the discussion had to do with the health impact of the coronavirus, we shifted focus as well to economic relief for the countries within the kingdom,” it was stated in a press release on Sunday.
“It is clear from the perspective of all countries that what all of us will need is a comprehensive package that, if executed as planned, should greatly help reduce the economic and social impact of the coronavirus the islands. Aruba was to be a part of the discussion, but at the last-minute due to an urgent press conference announcing their new measures, they were not able to attend.
Dutch Minister of the Interior Raymond Knops confirmed that some assistance was coming for the islands. “However, Dutch funds will not likely form the entirety of the relief package. The governments of the two islands would be wise to also secure other sources of funding sufficient to be made available as soon as possible.