PHILIPSBURG – On Wednesday January 30th, Prime Minister Leona Romeo-Marlin chaired an extraordinary shareholders meeting with Princess Juliana International Airport. Both the Supervisory Board and management of the Princess Juliana International Airport Company (PJIAH) and the Chair of the Supervisory Board and management of the Operating Company (PJIAE) were present.
During this meeting, all parties present – the Council of Ministers as shareholder, PJIAH and (PJIAE) expressed their full support for the Government’s financial plan for the reconstruction of the airport. Under this plan, 50 million US dollars will be provided as a grant from the World Bank Trust Fund to the Government of Sint Maarten, which will be loaned to the airport under favorable conditions. An additional 50 million US dollars will be become available as a loan through the European Investment Bank.
The available funding will help to finance the second phase of the terminal reconstruction, that is, internal facility and equipment reconstruction. The planned work will rebuild the entire internal installation, including dry walls, furniture/counters, electrical systems, IT, baggage system and security installations.
“Today’s meeting was very important to ensure that we are all on the same page. In the presence of the shareholder represented by the full Council of Ministers, all parties in the shareholder meetings unanimously agreed to formalize the financial assistance that will be provided by the World Bank and the European Investment Bank. I’m pleased that everyone at the table came together as a team in the interest of Sint Maarten and agreed that this is the best financing option to ensure the urgent reconstruction of the airport terminal and ultimately our country’s economy,” Prime Minister Romeo Marlin said.
As part of the Government’s financial plan, the airport will also receive a 15 million US dollar bridge loan to resolve its urgent liquidity problems. Two weeks ago, Prime Minister Leona Romeo-Marlin and Minister of Finance Perry Geerlings travelled to the Netherlands to negotiate a bridge loan to ensure that the airport can continue to pay its salaries and fulfil its other financial obligations in the coming months. The Minister of Finance Perry Geerlings and the Minister of TEATT, Stuart Johnson are currently finalizing this bridge loan.
Prime Minister Romeo-Marlin expressed her gratitude to all parties for their commitment in securing the necessary funding for the reconstruction of the airport. “I thank the all persons in the community for their patience and understanding during this period and especially our guests, those returning and those coming for the first time; we cannot achieve our goal of rebuilding the airport without your support.”