On Saba on Monday afternoon the 13th of June, Alexandra van Huffelen, State Secretary for Kingdom Relations and Digitalization and island Commissioner Bruce Zagers signed the multi-year governing agreement “Saba Package 2.0”. This contains concrete agreements between Saba and the Kingdom on the further development of a sustainable and self-sufficient Saba.
To achieve this goal the agreement includes four themes: ‘improving livelihoods’, ‘economic and spatial development’, ‘climate and nature’ and ‘good governance’. These themes are in line with the ‘Saba Vision 2030’ and the outline letter of the Cabinet.
In the past few months much work has been done to make clear agreements on these important themes. “I am pleased with this very pleasant and close cooperation with Saba,” says State Secretary van Huffelen. “Together we will continue to improve the livelihood of the people of Saba and build a sustainable future for the island.”
Like State Secretary van Huffelen, Island Commissioner Bruce Zagers is pleased with the collaboration around Saba Package 2.0, which builds on agreements from ‘Saba Package 1.0’ (2019-2022). “The signing of the ‘Saba Package 2.0’ marks an important moment, because the package is going to have a positive impact on many facets of the island and its inhabitants. The opportunities this package offers are the result of good cooperation and mutual trust between Saba and The Hague.”
Subsistence Security and Free Allowance
The Cabinet is investing in improving the standard of living of the residents of the Caribbean Netherlands, which will ensure higher incomes and benefits. In addition the Free Allowance of Saba will be structurally increased. The Cabinet and Saba are also committed to reduce the cost of living for Sabans where possible.
Climate, nature, economic and spatial development
Saba and the Kingdom are jointly investing in an accelerated transition to more than ninety percent sustainable energy and in the preservation and maintenance of Saba’s diverse nature. Efforts are also being made towards responsible and healthy spatial development with an eye for nature. And by drawing up a cultural policy plan a step will be taken towards investing more in Saba’s rich culture.
In addition the Ministry of Interior Affairs and Kingdom Relations will invest 1.6 million Euros this year in the further development of Saba’s administration and government organization.
The means to give an impulse to the plans in the agreement will come, among others, from the CN envelope (30 million euros structurally). The Cabinet will also invest 35 million Euros for the preservation of nature and environment and the implementation of the Nature and Environment Policy Plan for Saba, Bonaire and St. Eustatius.