Preparations for Country St. Maarten Continue, With first meeting of Social Economic Council


Preparations for St. Maarten to become country will continue on Thursday with the first mock session of Country St. Maarten’s Social Economic Council. This meeting will be held at the UTS training center in Philipsburg.

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This meeting is a continuation of the first Social Economic Council Seminar held on November 25th last year. At that seminar, moderated by Miss. Gracita Arrindell of the Island Government’s Secretariat, an outline was given by Commissioner William Marlin on the importance of the Social Economic Council, a possible structure and the functioning of the council.

Other speakers included, Mr. Ludwig Quenniche, representing the employers the workers representative Mr. Theofilus Thompson, representing labour and the expert guiding the process, Mr. Glenn Camelia.

At this seminar the agreement and commitment was expressed to start up the Social Economic Consultation on a specific topic as part of the preparations for becoming country by 10-10-10. Among the things that St.Maarten needs to have in place by 10-10-10 is a Social Economic Council, not one on paper, but one that is really functioning.

As part of the preparations to have an up and running consultation body in place for when we become country, this Thursday 4 representatives of employers’ organizations, 4 of the workers organizations and 4 independent members will start with the first of three mock sessions on the new draft ordinance: "Establishment Regulation" (Vestigingsregeling 2008) that the government wants to introduce. This new "Establishment Regulation" law will reduce the administrative burden on businesses.


These three meetings of the Social Economic Council are in fact mock-meetings but with the real application of the law with all the rules etc. that the government is drafting for the Social Economic Council for country St.Maarten.

With this practical approach the government hopes to have a real functioning Social Economic Council by 10-10-10 for country St.Maarten. The approach of the government is to not only put it on paper, but to have it function in practice and reality as well.

Being part of the democracy of a country, a real functioning tripartite consultation system for St.Maarten is a must.