Schiphol willing to reconsider support to airport if good governance restored | THE DAILY HERALD

Schiphol International director Kjell Kloosterziel (Photo courtesy


AMSTERDAM/PHILIPSBURG–The Royal Schiphol Group (RSG) is willing to continue its support of the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA) terminal reconstruction project, but only if corporate governance is restored at the airport.

  This is what Schiphol International director Kjell Kloosterziel wrote in a letter to Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs and Finance Minister Ardwell Irion on May 27.

  Kloosterziel’s message is a reiteration of what he previously sent to Jacobs and Irion on May 6. In this letter, RSG threatened to pull out of the airport reconstruction project as of mid-July unless good governance was restored by May 26.

  In the May 27 letter, Klooster referenced a meeting between RSG and the two St. Maarten Ministers that occurred earlier that day.

  “We appreciate the open discussion today and are encouraged by the commitment expressed by you during the meeting on behalf of the government of St. Maarten to rectify any governance violations and ensure good governance at the airport going forward as soon as possible.

  “As indicated in our meeting, we are willing to reconsider our position on the termination of our support as soon as appropriate measure have been implemented to ensure proper governance of the airport is assured and [we – Ed.] confirm that Royal Schiphol Group is willing to continue to support the reconstruction of the airport, through the cooperation agreement, when that happens,” said Kloosterziel.

  What is exactly meant by “appropriate measures” to ensure “proper corporate governance” has been a mystery to the public.

  The suspension of PJIA holding company PJIAH managing director Dexter Doncher has been rumoured to be one of measures. However, neither St. Maarten officials or those in the Netherlands have yet to explicitly clarify what corporate governance violations have been committed at the airport, and what concrete steps are needed to improve the situation.

  “We also want to reiterate and provide you with comfort that our involvement at the airport, from the start, is intended to only support the airport and the country of St. Maarten with the reconstruction of the airport after the devasting impact of Hurricane Irma,” wrote Kloosterziel.

  The letter was copied to PJIAH supervisory board chairman Glen Daniel, PJIA operating company PJIAE chief executive officer (CEO) Brian Mingo, and St. Maarten Trust Fund Steering Committee member Frans Weekers.

Source: The Daily Herald