St. Maarten Government, Cft working on joint budget solution

POSTED: 04/5/11 12:06 PM

Donner: “It is time we started with the implementation.”

St. Maarten – Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams expects the island and the Board of Financial Supervision (Cft) will have an agreement on Budget 2011 before April 15, when the Kingdom Council of Ministers meets again on St. Maarten’s budget. According to the prime minister the parties – government and Cft – have been “actively communicating” since they both sent letters to Minister of Kingdom Relations Piet Hein Donner on March 30. The Cft’s letter called for the Kingdom Council of Ministers to issue an instruction. They chose instead to mandate Donner to give St. Maarten one last chance to come to a joint solution with the Cft.

“Consultations have been taking place between the finance minister and the Cft and we expect that by April 15 we will have a proposal and we will have an agreement. We both understand that we need to focus on an agreement so that St. Maarten can continue on other issues. We believe that we will have a proposal for consensus this week and then by the 15th we will have a budget that complies with the law on financial supervision,” Wescot-Williams said.

The prime minister was joined by Finance Minister Hiro Shigemoto in the meeting with Donner on the budget.

Cft Secretary Geert Beergsma had said last Friday that members of the Cft would be in Philipsburg this week and that he anticipated that parties would be able to find a solution.

Donner is happy that parties are talking and said he used Monday’s meeting to urge the government to comply with the Consensus Kingdom Law on Financial Supervision.

“There has so far been too much discussion and not enough implementation. It is time we started with the implementation,” Donner said.

Parties did not get into the discussion on the appointment of a Cft board member from St. Maarten as time ran out. The government proposed businessman Michel Soons, but the Kingdom government has not yet confirmed him.

“We’ve been writing letters to find out what is the issue, but today we weren’t really able to get into it,” the prime minister said.


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