Minister Meyers opens country’s Strategic Economic Plan Workshop

At the opening of the Strategic Economic Plan Workshop on Thursday morning, Minister of Economic & Tourism Affairs, Telecommunications & Transport Franklin Meyers thanked everyone for coming and provided a short elucidation about the changes that Sint Maarten has experienced and is currently going through.


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Minister Meyers said that Sint Maarten has as a duty-free port with many benefits for business persons and foreign investors, the government however did not reap or benefit as much from the economic prosperity.

In light of the changing economic climate and the current demands on government, there needs to be a fairer balance of approach whereby all interest/parties involved can benefit. So a road map has to be drawn up and for this reason we are here today at this workshop, Minister Franklin Meyers told the attendees.

Sint Maarten is a unique country; we have all the major challenges of developed countries right here, and we have done ‘so much for so long with so little’, the Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Franklin Meyers told his audience.

We have to look at our challenges and our advantages, and we have to include the social aspect in our economic development. Sint Maarten is a one-pillar tourism economy, so we have to be deliberate on our efforts by ensuring that our efforts are wide ranging, from the top to the bottom. These efforts are crucial to having a balanced economy and essential to having a fair society where wealth is concerned, Minister Meyers pointed out.

The forum, supported by the Department of Economic Policy and Research, is being executed by the consulting firm of KPMG.

Afterward the short introductory speech by Minister Meyers, there was two presentations: one by the Raymond Begina, Managing Director, KPMG Advisory Services B.V.; the other by Judianne Hoeve, Project Leader, Strategic Economic Plan.

Begina gave a presentation on the plan for the next generation, what were the past and recent achievements, what needs to be envisioned for the new Sint Maarten, the need for bench marking, and why the Strategic plan is important, which he pointed out as trying to achieve a long term sustainable economy, and create broad support, achieve sustainable increase in the living standard and prosperity for the Sint Maarten community. These goals he said should be achieved through education and training, increased employment and business activities, growth in foreign and local investments, balanced wealth distribution, social cohesiveness, and good governance.

Hoeve, the second presenter, spoke about the logistical aspect of developing the strategic economic plan Sint Maarten 2012-2022, namely, by dealing with three questions: Where does Sint Maarten stand as of 2012? Where should Sint Maarten be in 2022? What are the building blocks for the strategic plan?

The attendees were divided into three groups: 1) Economic work stream; 2) Social Work Stream, 3) Youth: a. economic work stream, b. social work stream.