Member of Parliament George Pantophlet would like to know if anyone is paying attention to the Dutch Budget of 2013 and its economy. He has learnt that they have a deficit of some 16.7 billion euro’s or some 2.7% of their Gross Domestic Product.
The European Union members have agreed to 3%.It is believed however that it is more like 4.5% and if no new policies are implemented this deficit can grow more in 2014 and 2015 for that matter. The following is a quote:"The Dutch Financial sector have worsened since 2007" end of quote. But fortunately for them they are allowed to have a deficit while St. Maarten is not allowed to have a deficit. And this is the per capita the 5th richest country in Europe. With regards to our Budget he knows we signed an agreement to have the Kingdom Law for Financial Supervision established (afspraak is afspraak). And article 100.2 of our constitution states; "The annual Budget and the long-term budget shall be balanced". And goes on to explain when departure from such might be necessary. On the matter of the Dutch’s deficit I will not be able to say whether they are including investments overseas and assets they have in many countries around the world. He would not be surprised if some of the monies not circulating are somewhere in a safe haven where many other vibrant millionaires hide their money from which no taxes have been paid. But what’s new. According to reports 30 to 40% of the world’s money is in these accounts. Maybe if some of the millionaires in the Netherlands would bring these monies back and pay their fare share of taxes it would turn the deficit into a surplus. Let us look at the issue of many homeowners in the Netherlands and the value of their homes. According to The Central Bureau for Statistics of the Netherlands in 2011 a quarter of the homes were worth less than their mortgage, approximately 1 million homes. The report continues to mention that since 2008 a share of these households with a lower value than their mortgage have doubled from 13 to 25 percent. It is an average of 13 thousand euro’s per household. This amount differs tremendously per age category. Almost 60% of these persons are younger than 40. And the homeowners of whom the breadwinner is between the ages of 25 to 30, it stands at three quarter or 75% of the ones who’s mortgages are worth more than their homes. Those who entered during the peak of the market, not only are most of their homes undervalued but on average they suffer the most, almost 30 thousand euro’s. So he understands why some Dutch politicians are taking the focus from what is happening in the Netherlands and placing it on St. Maarten. In other words take the heat off them. They as their people are saying have mismanaged their funds. Pensioners have lost part of their pension because of bad investments. With the ongoing negative developments the Dutch are looking at a 10% decrease in purchasing power. That should make a good front page story on St. Maarten? Please don’t blame me for this quote it is from Mandela’s Book "Long walk to freedom. I am sure there are many who will not like it but he was writing about his experience in South Afri1ca during the Apartheid Regime period so I don’t know who had access to the written media at that time but here goes and I quote:"Although I read a variety of newspapers from around the country, newspapers are only a poor shadow of reality; their information is important to a freedom fighter not because it reveals the truth, but because it discloses the biases and perceptions of both those who produce the paper and those who read it" end of quote."