Published On: Sat, Mar 27th, 2021

Adjusted COHO-proposal before the summer to Parliament

THE HAGUE / PHILIPSBURG – The adjusted draft consensus kingdom law Caribbean Reform and Development Entity (COHO) will reach the parliaments of the Netherlands, St. Maarten, Aruba and Curacao before the summer break of the Dutch Parliament. State Secretary Raymond Knops wrote on Friday in a letter to the Second Chamber that this is his objective. The summer break for the Dutch Parliament begins on July 9 and ends on September 6.

Knops emphasizes in this letter that the draft law is not fundamentally at odds with the Kingdom Charter according to the advice from the Kingdom Council of State. “The department makes several critical remarks about the effectiveness and the lawfulness of the proposal. But it does not observe a fundamental contradiction with the Charter. It is lamentable that this impression has been created.”

It is regrettable that the advice from the Council of State was leaked to several Caribbean media, the State Secretary states in this letter. “Based on the law on the Council of State an advice from the Department for Advice only becomes public when it is sent to the Second Chamber, together with the follow-up report and the law proposal.”

After consultation with the Council of State, Knops decided to make the complete advice public, “in the interest of public debate based on facts.”

While an agreement about the follow-up report is still a work in progress, Knops maintains that the essence of the draft law will remain the same. “The Kingdom Council of State considers it logical that the Netherlands attaches conditions to the provision of financial support to Aruba, Curacao and St. Maarten. It also finds a consensus kingdom law a fitting framework for it, in particular the establishment of a special administrative body (the COHO).”

Knops furthermore reports that work on the country packages and the associated implementation agendas takes place in good cooperation with the countries. “The prime ministers of Aruba, Curacao and St. Maarten have emphasized this. I hope to continue with this good cooperation with the production of the reaction to the advice from the Department for Advice. This report and an adjusted COHO-proposal require the approval of all four countries.”


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