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Today’s Top Headlines

Curacao Told To Address Budget Concerns

by Amanda Banks,, London

24 July 2012

Curacao has been tasked by the Netherlands government with getting its fiscal house in order after it contravened a pledge made upon its independence to maintain balanced budgets.

Under a 'formal compliance order' from the Netherlands government, Curacao must present plans for budget savings worth some ANG153m (USD86m) by September, to ensure a fiscal balance in 2012, and make good the ANG98m budgetary deficit the territory incurred in 2011.

On November 10, 2010, a new constitutional relationship between the Netherlands and its Caribbean dependencies became effective, granting greater autonomy to Curacao and Saint Maarten and dissolving the Netherlands Antilles. The Netherlands agreed to write off the two territories' debts in exchange for an agreement that the territories' authorities would prudently manage their finances.

While Saint Maarten achieved a balanced budget in 2011, Curacao registered a significant deficit, partially due to weak economic performance, which is highly dependent on the contribution of financial services, but also because of the slow progress made in healthcare reform.

TAGS: tax | Netherlands | fiscal policy | international financial centres (IFC) | budget | Curaçao | offshore | Netherlands Antilles | Saint Maarten | services

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