Curaçao Minister of Economic Development Ruisandro Cijntje holds copy of book labelled national export strategy
Group of officials sit around a rectangular table

Curaçao marks gains in National Export Strategy

27 February 2024
ITC News

Nearly two years after adopting its national export strategy (NES), a roundtable looked at how the country is putting its plan to work.

‘We are pleased to witness the progress of NES implementation. As government, we remain committed to coordinating the endeavours of various ministries for joint the efforts to advance economic prosperity and sustainable development across diverse industries,’ said Minister of Economic Development Ruisandro Cijntje.

Looking ahead, priority areas of focus include updating legislation and passing pending laws, as well as the building of capacities within ministries. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Economic Development (MEO), Stichting Overheids Accountant Bureau (SOAB) will continue to provide support with coordination of efforts and tracking the results of NES implementation progress.

The roundtable on 16 February noted significant progress:

  • Financial services: A new Safe Financial Corridor facilitates foreign direct investment to Suriname, utilizing Curaçao's banking institutions, securities exchanges, and trust companies. Six tax laws are before Parliament to modernize the tax regime and align it with international standards, especially in anticipation of the Financial Action Task Force Audit this year, particularly the agreement with the EU regarding automatic exchange of information with respect to financial accounts.
  • Information technology: The new Caribbean Data Centres Association represents a significant leap forward in fortifying digital infrastructure and connectivity. And a new Digital Hub Americas serves as a cornerstone for the IT sector, promising enhanced technological capabilities and innovation. Other priorities in the year ahead include launching a Tech Incubator Program, establishing a mentoring platform, and accelerating AI development.
  • Creative industries: A new Creative Industries Committee was announced on 15 February. Ongoing efforts are focused on establishment of Creative Industries Sector Association, creating a single definition of creative industries and mapping the sector.
  • Medical and wellness tourism: This fragmented sector is moving to establishing a Wellness Association to promote a unified value-adding sector. Additional activities are working with wellness and alternative medicine education.

Additional efforts in trade facilitation and investment promotion persist, with endeavours to attract investment into various projects, among the recent one  aquaculture, aquaponics, and underwater research. The iGuides Curaçao webportal  provides investors with up-to-date information on business costs, opportunities and conditions, was designed by UNCTAD and the International Chamber of Commerce.

Initiatives have been undertaken by MEO to streamline and consolidate trade-related data from various sources, ensuring accessibility and comprehensiveness for exporters and investors to one single website ( planned to be launched next month.

The National Export Strategy aims to create jobs, enhance local skills, improve administrative procedures, increase foreign exchange earnings, and strengthen the country's regional presence. Achieving those goals requires the concerted effort and dedication of policymakers. Combined with agility and commitment of the private sector, this sets Curaçao on the path to a delivery the strategic vision ‘Curaçao – where business succeeds’.

About the national export strategy

The strategy was designed with support from the International Trade Centre (ITC), drawing on more than 60 consultations in 2020 and 2021.