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Caribbean Guilder Delayed


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Caribbean guilder a reality, says minister .

Saturday, 19 February 2011 00:53 .WILLEMSTAD--At this moment, the Curaçao Government does not have a viewpoint on a possible introduction of the US dollar as legal tender on the island, says Minister of Finance George Jamaloodin (MFK) during a public meeting of Parliament.


However, the introduction of a Caribbean guilder in 2012 is the only thing that is certain.


According to the minister, he is currently listing the viewpoints of various stakeholders on the pros and cons of possible dollarization. Once this process is completed, he will announce the various positions.


Jamaloodin made his statement at the beginning of a meeting that coalition party "Pueblo Soberano" (PS) had requested on the joint Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten, as well as the recent statements from its president Emsley Tromp on dollarization.


The minister held his presentation after a proposal from opposition party PAR that could count on unanimous support.


The coalition majority rejected an unexpected presentation Tromp had wanted to give on the possible dollarization on Curaçao, because it was not on the agenda.


PS leader Helmin Wiels, who had requested the meeting, severely criticised the plans for a joint Central Bank of Curaçao and St. Maarten and said he doubted whether this was necessary. PS supports an own Curaçao guilder.


Wiels also questioned the role of the Central Bank and Tromp. He said he would introduce a motion during the continuance of the meeting to plead for an audit of the Central Bank.


"We have started a new country. Therefore, we have to know what we have and with this motion we want to obtain such clarity."


Wiels further elaborated on a recent speech from Tromp on St. Maarten, in which the latter again argued for the introduction of the US dollar. His statement that if Curaçao were to switch to the dollar Aruba would follow shortly afterwards kicked up quite some dust and Wiels wanted to hear all the ins and outs of this matter from the minister.


Responding to Wiels' audit proposal, PAR faction leader Pedro Atacho asked the minister whether he would perhaps give an advice on how to vote for the motion. Atacho also emphasised that the party would welcome a discussion on the subject.


PNP leader Humphrey Davelaar said it supported audits, but on the other hand emphasised that important institutions for the island should be treated with the necessary respect.


In her intervention, the MAN faction leader Eunice Eisden said the introduction of the dollar on Curaçao is not up for discussion now. The agenda item was adjourned to give Jamaloodin time to formulate answers to the various questions.


It is not known when the discussion will resume. According to Parliament Chairman Ivar Asjes (PS), "that would not be today or tomorrow."



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