Government must honor Government agreement with Mr. Henry Brookson.
PHILIPSBURG:— The Government of Sint Maarten purchased the Emilio Wilson Estate for the people of Sint Maarten. Rain Forest Adventures will be developing part of the property as a new tour for cruise and stay-over visitors. This will benefit our economy by creating employment for our people and bringing in revenue to the coffers of Government and keeping our destination competitive with others.
I will be presenting a motion in the House of Parliament that calls on the Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Development, Environment and Infrastructure (Ministry VROMI), to develop a “Nature-Agriculture Park.”
The National Nature Park would ensure the protection of our environment and heritage which is key to the preservation of our culture, and heritage for younger, current and future generations; and due to limited land resources available throughout the country, this should be developed at the Emilio Wilson Estate.
One-third of all food produced in the world is lost or wasted from farm to fork, according to estimates calculated by the Food and Agriculture Organization; this wastage not only has an enormous negative impact on the global economy and food availability, it also has major environmental impacts; Sint Maarten imports the majority of its food; this means that our foreign exchange goes right back out of the country in order to purchase produce since we import basically everything; that this does not bode well for food security for the people of Sint Maarten; it is a fact that home-grown food is much healthier than packaged and processed food products; it is the responsibility of a country to promote home-grown food.
I will be calling on the Government via the Minister of VROMI in the motion that Government promotes the sustainable development of agriculture via the creation of an Agriculture Station on part of the Emilio Wilson Estate; that said Agriculture Station would also become a tourist attraction; that said Agriculture Station can charge fees for its fresh produce and juices that would be purchased by tourists thereby making the station a sustainable effort; that Rain Forest Adventures also works to promote the Agriculture Station in its promotional activities.
Both of these are in the interests of the people of this country and needs to be developed as it will benefit the economy, create employment, protect the environment for all to enjoy and provide an opportunity for our visitors to experience our heritage, nature and fresh produce which would be part and parcel of a visitor experience of the ‘Friendly Island.’
In closing, I think the APS, Rainforest and Henry Brookson projects can compliment each other in the bringing back the history, heritage and culture of St. Maarten. All projects should work together in the general interest of St. Maarten based on the draft zoning plan for the area.
Source: St. Martin News Network
MP Lake to present motion for National Nature Park and Agriculture Station.