Holland pledges extra money for Bonaire

1st November 2011, Comments 0 comments

The Caribbean island of Bonaire will receive an additional 1.5 million euros to pay for a backlog in the maintenance of buildings and infrastructure, and to cover additional investment in good governance.

Dutch Interior and Kingdom Relations Minister Piet Hein Donner made the pledge to the island executive on Monday.

Bonaire was one of five islands that formed the Netherlands Antilles until the major political reforms implemented in October 2010.

In a referendum held on each of the islands, the people of Curaçao and St Maarten voted to become autonomous nations within the Kingdom of the Netherlands while Bonaire, Saba and St Eustatius chose to be special Dutch municipalities. Aruba, the sixth Dutch Caribbean island, was the first to become autonomous in 1986.

Mr Donner is accompanying Queen Beatrix who was on Bonaire on Monday as part of a tour of all six islands. The minister says 'major progress' was made in the past year, primarily in the fields of public health and education. However, he acknowledged that there was much that still needed improvement, and major price hikes had caused problems for many people on the island.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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