Reports that Dutch commercial banks are closing bank accounts of residents and companies in the Caribbean Netherlands have Member of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament Antje Diertens of the Democratic Party D66 concerned.
Diertens on Monday submitted written questions to State Secretary of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops and Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra about the reported withdrawing of Dutch banks from Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba.
The Member of Parliament (MP) in particular asked about the intentions of ABN AMR() Bank to halt banking services for private persons and businesses in the Caribbean Netherlands.
“Can you indicate what this means for the availability of banking services of Dutch banks for residents of the islands? To what extent do you consider it important that Caribbean Netherlands residents have access to banking services of a bank that makes it easy to do banking business with the Netherlands, for example, by offering an account in euros?”
Diertens wanted to know whether residents of the islands can lay claim to having a basic current account, prescribed in the financial supervision law and a guideline of the European Parliament, and whether they can switch to a different bank account and have access to current accounts with basic functions.
The MP linked the banking matter to free movement of Caribbean Netherlands residents in the European Union (EU). “To what extent do residents of the Caribbean Netherlands resort under the definition of being consumers that are legally staying in the EU? How do you interpret in light of that definition the right of residents of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba to move freely in EU territories?”
In concluding, Diertens enquired about consultations of the finance minister, in collaboration with Netherlands Central Bank DNB, with the Dutch Payments Association and the four large banks.
The Daily Herald.