The islands are known for their coral reefs, igneous rocks, and tropical climate. The southern islands are hilly with a lower elevation. The arid climate is good for cacti and other desert plants; other vegetation has been destroyed by overgrazing. 1 The Dutch government is involved in efforts to preserve the diverse marine life and coral reefs around the island.2
In 2016, roughly 60% of the citizens of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba were unmarried. The amount of divorces is approximately 50% of the amount of marriages in one year.1 Nearly half of Dutch Caribbean households consist of only one person. Single-parent households are 12% of households, and married couples make up 26%. Dutch Caribbean households are different from Dutch households in the Netherlands in that 13% of families live with extended family members, as compared to only 1.4% in the Netherlands.2
In 2016, representatives attended a convention to discuss the improvement of women’s rights in the Dutch Caribbean.1 Like many other Caribbean countries, the Netherlands Antilles were a common transit stop for drug trade until the Dutch government cracked down on drug trade in the early 2000’s.2 As central municipalities, Sint Eustatius, Bonaire, and Saba have a single police force, fire department and ambulance service with a central dispatch center.3
Since 1992, education in the Netherlands Antilles has been compulsory from age 6 to age 17, and the literacy rate is nearly on a par with that of the metropolitan Netherlands.1,2 Since the dissolution of the Antilles in 2010, schools in the Dutch Caribbean have officially been a part of the Netherlands education system and receive all of their funding from the Netherlands.3
In the 1990’s, the Caribbean islands of the Netherlands struggled with a declining economy, high crime, and many of its citizens living below the poverty line. The dissolution of the Antilles in 2010 allowed each island to decide about the state of their government. Those who chose to stay close to the Dutch government (Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba) receive benefits for low-income citizens. The Netherlands also assumed 70% of the Antillean debt in 2010.1 The unemployment rate in 2014 varied between 4% to 9% amongst Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba.2
For years after World War II, the Netherlands Antilles feared the economic consequences of independence from the Netherlands. Tourism and hospitality services are the main parts of the economy.1 Both Bonaire and Sint Eustatius were major sugarcane plantations in 17th and 18th centuries.1 Saba’s rugged land and inaccessibility prevented it from ever being of economic importance.1
Although the Netherlands Antilles was dissolved in 2010, all six islands retain ties to the government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.1 Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba remain close to the government as central municipalities.1 This means they are a part of the Netherlands itself. Citizens of these islands enjoy the same rights as Dutch citizens and assistance from the Dutch government in public health and improvement programs. Dutch legislation will be introduced on these islands slowly over a number of years.2
Mosquito-borne illnesses, including Zika, are a risk in the Dutch Caribbean islands.1 All citizens who legally work or reside in the Caribbean Netherlands receive government health insurance, regardless of income.2
The central Dutch government is involved in the most serious cases of child services and family guardianship in the Caribbean islands.1 In 2015, child benefits were extended to Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba from the central Dutch government. These monthly payments will benefit low-income families with children in an attempt to reduce poverty in the Caribbean Netherlands.2
The islands are commonly home to geckos, lizards, sea turtles, and an abundance of marine life.1,2 In 2015, the Dutch government announced that the waters surrounding Bonaire and Saba would become shark sanctuaries in an attempt to preserve the sharks’ presence in the marine ecosystem.3
Chairman of the Committee for Financial Supervision CFT CuraÃ§ao and St. Maarten, the CFT Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba and since 2015 also of the Committee for Financial Supervision Aruba Age Bakker is leaving per July 1, after more than five and a ... See more..
âSt. Eustatius is one of the major benefactors of this programme that also includes CuraÃ§ao, Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos, Saba, St. Barths, Montserrat, Bonaire, St. Maarten, Aruba, and the Cayman Islands. âOur approach is to ... See more..
A week-long training in utilities metre reading, conducted by Henk Bartels, was attended by a group of persons from the Netherlands, Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius. The training was held in the conference room of St. Eustatius Utility Company STUCO. See more..
Van Raak said it was important to have this clarity before the meeting with the delegation of the Island Councils of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba in the Second Chamber next week Thursday, June 15. The Committee agreed, so a request was sent to ... See more..
By taking part in the Health Study, Baboe said the people of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba will make a major contribution to public health. This study is commissioned by the Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sports VWS and will be carried out by ... See more..
WIB THE HAGUE - The Dutch Government will institute a so-called Deposit Guarantee System for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba to create more security for bank clients on the islands. In case of bankruptcy of a bank, clients will receive a maximum of US ... See more..
Today's report that the Dutch Government plans to institute a so-called Deposit Guarantee System in the Caribbean Netherlands is good news for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. If commercial banks there go broke for whatever reasons, clients with ... See more..
THE HAGUE--Saying that he shared the concerns about the socio-economic situation in Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba, Dutch caretaker Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk has asked the islands' pensioners to be patient in the ... See more..
On Thursday morning, June 15, the delegations will meet with the Members of the Island Councils of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba in the Second Chamber. In the afternoon working visits will be paid to the Elemental Water Makers, the Nuon Solar Project ... See more..
WILLEMSTAD - Mrs. G. Edelenbos, Mrs. P.P.M. Van der Burgt, Mr. Th. Veling and Mr. F.W.J. Meijer have been appointed new members of the Common Court of Aruba, CuraÃ§ao, Saint Maarten and the BES Islands (Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and Saba). See more..