Wescot-Williams asserts St. Maarten’s leadership rights at Central Bank

POSTED: 04/23/12 1:55 PM

St. Maarten – Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams has asserted St. Maarten has equal rights as Curacao in leading what should happen at the Central Bank of Curacao and St. Maarten. She made the assertion on Friday in reply to recent statements that St. Maarten should have less say than Curacao.

The prime minister’s assertion is based on three articles in the central bank statute. The first one she quoted is article 32, which gives St. Maarten and Curacao “full and same rights” when it comes to calling meetings and voting. The second article Wescot-Williams quoted was article 25 which states that the chairman of the supervisory board of directors is appointed and dismissed by joint resolution. This on top of the fact that while each country proposes three members for the board, the actual appointment is done jointly. Wescot-Williams also drew upon article eight of the bank charter, which states that the Central Bank exercises supervision of the financial institutions according to rules which are adopted by harmonized national ordinances.
Wescot-Williams also asserted that the basis of a joint central bank for Curacao and St. Maarten is anchored in the November 2, 2006 final declaration.

“In the final agreement of November 2006, the two countries, Curaçao and St. Maarten signed a political agreement by which they have voluntarily chosen to enter a monetary union with one central bank. The role a central bank plays, focuses on the health and stability of the financial system in a monetary union and as  such there is no distinction in terms of policy, relative to, for example, the size of the countries forming the union. There is one policy for the entire union. As an example, one can look at the policy of the European Central Bank for the European Monetary Union states,” Wescot-Williams stated in a release.

The prime minister has also stressed that the central bank executes policy-making and implementation autonomous from the governments of the countries so that neither can influence the monetary policy in its favor and to the detriment of the other country.

“The relative size of the respective country’s shareholding in the joint central bank as cited is therefore a concept that has no meaning in the context of the monetary and prudential policy that is executed by the joint central bank as regards the union as a whole. That said, the relative size of the shareholding of the countries in the central bank is related exclusively to the division of possible profit. No-where in the central bank statute – or in any other law – is any indication to be found justifying that as a result of the relative size of the shareholding, St. Maarten is entitled to less control rights,”

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