From June 8th to 12th, the Netherlands Caribbean week (CN-week) took place in The Hague. Priorities during this week were as stated before: poverty alleviation, children’s rights and promoting the economic development.
Multi-annual Programme (MAP) and development plans for each island
Since taking office as Kingdom Representative, Gilbert Isabella travels regularly between the islands and to The Hague to share his findings and experiences from the Caribbean Netherlands and to bring the views of the island governments to the attention. He speaks regularly with various Ministers, State Secretaries and civil servants, with special attention to the problems which arise on the islands. As for preparation, the RV speaks regularly with the governments of the three islands. The RV is very satisfied with the fact that in December 2014 all three islands came up with their own development plans. The MAP is partly based on these plans.
Resources and budgets in the ministries
Various ministries have recently, also following talks between the RV and ministers, released resources from their budget to address specific problems on the islands. In interaction with the island governments, this has resulted in sound agreements which are regulated in the Multi-annual per island and confirmed by the signature of coordinating Minister Plasterk of the Interior and Kingdom Relations (BZK) with the authorities on Saba and Bonaire.
St. Eustatius could not sign the Multi-annual. Kingdom Representative Gilbert Isabella has said he will devote himself the coming period to St. Eustatius. “The people of St. Eustatius should not suffer from the current developments”. The Kingdom Representative will do his upmost, along with the island government, to start a course of improvements, so that the multi-annual programme of this island can be discussed as soon as possible and submitted to the Minister.
All in all an excellent result of which the efforts of many in recent months, have been most rewarding.