More support for islands from Dutch municipalities

The initiative whereby Dutch municipalities made personnel available to assist St. Maarten after Hurri­cane Irma will be expanded and become more structural for the entire Dutch Canbbean.

Dutch State Secretary of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops confirmed, in a letter he sent to the Dutch Parliament’s Second Chamber earlier this week, that he signed an agreement with the Associa­tion of Dutch Municipalities VNG on June 4.

The declaration of intent states that the parties will give impulses to the exchange of civil servants working in Eu­ropean Dutch municipalities and their counterparts in the six Dutch Caribbean islands.

“We work in a network of municipalities that are will­ing to detach civil servants to the islands and to welcome employees of the Dutch Car­ibbean governments, to learn from each other and to spe­cifically increase administra­tive capacity,” said Knops.

Knops announced that he was working with the VNG to arrange a formal coopera­tion structure that includes agreements on financing and other criteria, which should be finalised after the summer. Knops announced the inten­tion to intensify cooperation between the VNG and the islands in a letter to the Sec­ond Chamber regarding the progress of the administrative agreement’s execution with the Public Entity Bonaire.

According to him, the ex­ecution of the administrative agreement was in the first phase. This phase consisted of strengthening implemen­tation capacity, drafting (further) plans of action and securing funds to execute projects. “This means pro­gress is not yet visible and tangible in all areas. This does not detract from the fact that this phase is essential to lay a sound basis for the future.”

The Daily Herald.

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