PHILIPSBURG–Had St. Maarten not suspended the floating of the NAf. 75-million bond for liquidity support for the country, the subscription would have most likely been filled.
Finance Minister Ardwell Irion said on Wednesday that “all indications beforehand” and discussions he held with “a few financial institutions, indicated that we would have had a filled subscription,” until he decided to suspend the process on Monday.
Speaking at the Council of Ministers press briefing, Irion said also that a letter received from Dutch State Secretary of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops on October 21, shows that St. Maarten did not violate the Kingdom Law on Financial Supervision RFT with the bond. “Today [Wednesday – Ed.], October 21, I again got a letter from State Secretary Knops that was sent to the [Committee for Financial Supervision] CFT and when we viewed the content of the letter, it was at least clear to us that St. Maarten did not violate any part of the RFT, and that there could be no expectation for St. Maarten to request approval as was indicated by the CFT in their letter,” Irion said.
“And it is very evident in the letter of today [Wednesday] that even to State Secretary Knops, it is not clear either… He is now asking for advice from CFT after the fact, which is a bit telling, but either way we are here today.”
The minister said St. Maarten decided to float the bond for liquidity support to, amongst other things, continue with the St. Maarten Stimulus and Relief Plan (SSRP) and because Knops did not continue talks with St. Maarten. The minister felt it important to look for funding to help the country fight the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.