Liesbeth Spies wants more cooperation in aiding Saba and St. Eustatius

POSTED: 02/17/12 12:23 PM

Curacao/St. Maarten – Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Liesbeth Spies has urged the government of St. Maarten to act more responsibly in assisting St. Eustatius and Saba. The call is part of a statement at the end of her introductory visit to Curacao, Aruba, Bonaire, St. Maarten, St. Eustatius and Saba and is being made because, “St. Maarten has demonstrated unwillingness to work together with neighboring countries.
Spies has told Dutch daily de Volkskrant that specific areas where St. Maarten is not cooperating is the reduction of import duties and the laying of a fiber optic cable that will connect St. Maarten, Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Kitts. The government of St. Maarten has refused to grant a landing permit for UTS to land the cable because they believe it would create unfair competition for the Telem Group.
Spies also reiterated her praise for the good discussions on financial matters during her stay in St. Maarten, but continued to cite major problems in justice.
“In the field of justice there have only been nice words so far and no deeds,” Spies said.
The Dutch minister is especially worried about the negative impact crime will have on the island’s tourism industry. One specific indicator Spies quoted is the 18 murders that took place in 2011.

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