On August 23 Minister of Finance Hon. Perry Geerlings and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Social & Health Insurances (SZV) Glen Carty signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) concerning the repayment of the Government debt owed to SZV.
Minister Geerlings stated that this is a very important step in meeting the Kingdom Government 2015 instruction of clearing debts to the SZV which would enhance the funds long-term sustainability.
The current debt is approximately Naf.93 million, but the Ministry of Finance and the SZV along with the Governments Accountants Bureau SOAB are busy reviewing the figures in order to have a complete picture of the debt with SZV.
“My priority is working to clear the debts of the country in order to make us financially sustainable. We have an obligation to meet the Kingdom Council 2015 instruction requirements which calls for measures to make our health and pension systems financially viable.
“The signing of the LOI puts us on a track to eliminate the debt over a period of time. At the moment we have the challenges from Hurricane Irma and our country is still in a very delicate recovery phase, but we are committed to settling our debts.
“By having various debt repayment plans in place, we are able to simultaneously move forward on other fronts. We already have the Tax Transformation Project underway.
“All of these are interlinked and will have a positive reflection on our national socio-economic development,” Minister of Finance Hon. Perry Geerlings said on Friday.
Minister Geerlings said that the debt goes back to the former Netherlands Antilles and after 10-10-10 when Sint Maarten acquired country status and thereafter additional debts to the SZV were accumulated.
The SZV provides accessible, quality health insurance and social security systems to the people of Sint Maarten.
PHOTO CUTLINE: L to R: Minister of Finance Hon. Perry Geerlings and Director of the SZV Glen Carty shaking hands after the signing of the LOI.