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Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten Urgently in Need of Funds but Refuse to Concede to Dutch Conditions

Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Ritter declared that, “we are not negotiating our proposal.”  Meanwhile, the Dutch islands of Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten hope that The Hague will relax the conditions set which have been on the table since July.  The situation is at a stalemate with the islands not conceding to the Dutch conditions. Therefore, there will be no money from the Netherlands to support the three economies. 

The leaders of the three islands have expressed anger and fear that their autonomy and democracy will be eroded upon acceptance of the Dutch new corona loan conditions.  It is said that parts of the conditions conflict with the rights that are guaranteed within the Kingdom for Curaçao, Aruba and Sint Maarten which affect democracy.  

Aruba accuses Undersecretary Raymond Knops, the Kingdom Relations, of having changed the conditions for a third emergency loan for the second time “at the last minute”.   Instead of 95 million euros for three months, Aruba would need to bridge five months with that amount which will place the island in payment problems.  The government says it will have  to borrow extra money.

Aruba already is looking at another option in borrowing money from the international capital market instead of The Hague. In a televised speech on Thursday,  Prime Minister Evelyn Wever-Croes reported that she has found a willing international party.

However, Undersecretary Knops indicates on Friday that Aruba will first need approval from The Hague which may also have consequences for the package of conditions. 

Although Aruba has an institution in the international market that is seriously interested in providing a loan, all three islands will continue constructive talks with the Netherlands.

Source: Government Conference and Curacao Chronicles

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