Opinion: The 80-20 rule

POSTED: 09/18/11 11:00 PM

Helmin Wiels finally got his way and now we’ll have to wait and see how damaging this is for Curacao’s economy. The introduction of the so-called 80-20 law obliges companies to hire at least 80 percent locals for their staff.

That this law violates the constitution does not seem to bother the Schotte-coalition. Wiels sees the legislation as the most important social law of the past forty years. We think that the law will strangle the economy and send foreign investors on the run to places with a friendlier investment climate. In the end, this will lead to less employment opportunities for locals.

The 80-20 law is a cheap theatrical trick that leads people to believe that the Schotte-government has the interest of its people at heart. The ugly truth is that this law will have the opposite effect.

To build and to maintain a strong economy, businesses must be able to flourish. And to be able to flourish, companies must be free to hire the best candidate for each function.

The government has a responsibility to educate its people, to make sure that its citizens are armed with knowledge that enables them to compete in the labor market.

By introducing a protectionist measure like the 80-20 law, Curacao has returned to the dark ages where it no longer matters what you know. What matters now is your birth certificate.

How the business community is going to react to this legislation is not difficult to guess. Companies that have invested heavily in Curacao will have to find a way to deal with the new situation. Other companies will simply pick themselves up and go to a place with a friendlier investment climate.

In the end this will lead to fewer jobs in an already vulnerable economy. The locals that Wiels pretends to protect will feel the pain and by the time you-know-what hits the proverbial fan, he will most likely be in the opposition again, ranting against a government that is unable to get the economy going. What a wonderful country.

Did you like this? Share it:
Opinion: The 80-20 rule by

Comments are closed.