Port St. Maarten first of government-owned companies to establish an Integrity Board as part of corporate transparency

The multi-million dollar Port St. Maarten facility which welcomes close to two million cruise passengers annually and pumps over US$300 million into the economy of the country, has established an Integrity Board.


Port St. Maarten is one of the first government-owned companies to establish such an entity in line with international corporate integrity standards.


“Based on the process of integrity that our shareholder has embarked upon, the Port St. Maarten supervisory board of directors and shareholder representative agreed to set-up the aforementioned.


“During the integrity process carried out by President of the Public Administration Integrity Committee Judge Bob de Wit entitled ‘Doing the right things right,’ Port St. Maarten cooperated fully and has also given its comments with respect to the outcome and results of the report prepared by Judge De Wit’s team.


“We also cooperated with the Kingdom Government’s instituted integrity study which went via the Kingdom representative on the island, the Governor and executed by PricewaterhouseCoopers of the Government of St. Maarten.


“On Friday the Kingdom Council of Ministers released the report entitled, ‘Integrity Inquiry into the functioning of the Government of St. Maarten.’ We have not received a copy of this report in order to give our reaction to the comments where reference is made to Port St. Maarten.


“As part of the checks and balances described in Port of St. Maarten’s Strategic Plan 2019, port management and supervisory board will continue to execute its audit umbrella along with the operational audit that was carried out by Ernst & Young. These results will also be discussed and shared with the incoming new shareholder representative,” Port St. Maarten Chief Executive Officer Mark Mingo said on Sunday.


The Integrity Board will have its first meeting in October to review current state of affairs with attention being paid to risk management and the connection to integrity as well as integrity training for management and port employees via the port’s human resources department under the guidance/review by an expert on the Integrity Board.


Mingo recently returned from the Netherlands where he met with several legal minds concerning the establishment of Port St. Maarten’s Integrity Board. One of the key areas to be strengthened is risk management.


The Integrity Board comprises of a member of the supervisory board of directors, CEO, the Chief Financial Officer, Human Resources, a member who has extensive knowledge and know-how about port operations, a member with international maritime experience, and a member with a legal background.


“The establishment of the Integrity Board is very important, just as important as an operational audit. At this stage of the integrity process, we need to look at the positive side of this recommendation, and we now need to follow-up on the legal framework where it concerns the company’s articles of incorporation and all supporting corporate documents.


“I am very pleased with the way we are progressing in this area. Port St. Maarten, the people’s port plays a key role in the economic viability of our country. As the current CEO, it is my responsibility to ensure that the people’s port and by extension the shareholder, the Government of St. Maarten, is operated in a transparent manner and in alignment with leading practices and global standards,” CEO Mark Mingo said on Sunday.