Miguel Goede 

Curaçao 3.0

Blog Caribbean 3.0

Curacao 3.0 and Green Town

Posted on March 25, 2013 at 7:10 AM

Dr. Miguel Goede

Goede 3.0; Goede Consultants

mpgoede@gmail.com

www.miguelgoed.com

23 March 2013

Introduction

When the refinery arrived in 1914 – 1916 Curaçao 2.0 started. 2.0 stands for the Industrial Society. As a consequence of this Curaçao has developed to what it is now. The Shell refinery is the cause and the symbol of Curaçao 2.0. With the arrival between 1914 and 1916 the feudal society (1.0) ended and the industrial society (2.0) started. 2.0 is the past And 3.0 is the future.

The refinery brought many developments to the island. Discussing the possibility that the refinery will disappear is very emotional to many. Many people are afraid of the future. The future is not in our hands alone and is uncertain (Regering van Curaçao, 2012).

The refinery became the property of the government of Curaçao in 1985, when the Shell unexpectedly left the island and sold the refinery for one dollar to the government. It currently is managed by a State Owned Company, Refineria di Korsou NV (RdK). The refinery is leased to the Venezuelan State Owned Company PDVSA to refine Venezuelan crude oil. The lease is 15 million dollars per year. The contract ends in 2019. Parties still have not started the negotiations to discuss the future after 2019.

Venezuela is coping with the aftermath of the death of President Chavez. Oil and PDVSA are crucial in the internal Venezuelan politics. The revolution is financed by the revenues from oil exports. There is a possibility that parties will not continue after 2019.

Exploring scenarios of Curaçao without the refinery is relevant.“But Isla remains a vital asset for PDVSA. It represents more than 10 percent of the company’s global refining capacity, while a tank depot next to the facility can store up to 16 million barrels of crude and has become an important staging point for Venezuelan oil shipments to China.”

The first person I know to envision Curacao without the refinery is John Steyaert, a manager at Arthur Andersen Business Consulting. He obviously was not from the island, because for someone who is born and raised here such a thought is inconceivable. I wrote this down in 1997 in the Caribbean Future in the year 2020:

“The Caribbean islands will not be known for their industrial activities. This is due to the scarcity of raw materials and the absence of a substantial home market and the danger of damaging the beaches and other aspects of the environment, crucial for other functions. In 2020 there will be no refinery for example in Curacao. The Schottegat will be a unique spot in the Caribbean, combining highly efficient seaport with tourist resorts.” (Arthur Andersen, 1997)

The project GreenTown in Curaçao is by now well known. On their website www.greentowncuracao.com they state: “GreenTown Curaçao is a new eco-friendly initiative with a mission. We want to replace the heavily polluting oil refinery on Curaçao with a lively green waterfront city, powered solely by sustainable energy. In the future, this new city will provide 10,000 people with the opportunity to find jobs and housing there.”

One can agree that the current refinery in the current location is not an option in the long run, but how will the project GreenTown be executed? GreenTown is part of Curacao 3.0, the Information Age. Can we calculate the number and types of jobs that will be created?

This is not an economic paper but an article written by a Public Administrator with his focus on Strategy and Change Management.

Vision of Curaçao; Island of education and sophistication

The questions raised can only be answered based on a vision. But what is the vision of Curacao? There have been several attempts to envision this future. The first one was “2020” by Arthur Andersen in the late 1990s.

2020 Vision

–An open and competitive economy enabled by state of the art technology and an attractive financial and physical infrastructure, in which a core government has the role of conductor and refrains from playing along with the other musicians of the orchestra.

–This economy should also be diverse, consisting of strong industrial sectors as well as a solid service sector, especially the hospitality industry.

–This economy is the foundation for the happiness of the people,who will be living in a continuous learning community and preventive healthcare system. (Arthur Andersen, 1997)

In 1999 VishonKorsou published a vision for Curaçao. But looking back at the vision it is not a clear vision (VishonKorsou, 1999). The Vision is very broad. It does not provide clear criteria to continue or not continue the Refinery.

Another early vision is the report “Island of Education and Sophistication”. This strategy of "Education and Sophistication" requires an immediate two-pronged approach from a development point of view: a focus on developing the education industry and attracting the sophisticated tourist. Investment in these two initiatives will create a corresponding demand in their respective sectors but also will create demand and opportunities in the business services and entertainment sectors. When put together, the result is a cluster strategy that includes a focus on Education, the Curaçao Experience, Niche Tourism, and Specialized Business Services.

The Cluster Strategy

A cluster strategy is envisioned to unify and stimulate Curaçao's development. This cluster strategy focuses on four main clusters:

1. A Focus on Education

2. Nurturing the Curaçao Experience

3. Specialized Business Services

4. Niche Tourism

However, the synergies created by these clusters have a direct effect on the following sectors:

5. Transportation & Logistics

6. IT/e-Commerce

7. Commercial, Residential, Retail

It is important to note that the economic multipliers do not begin and end with education or even these clusters. In fact they both leverage and support the transportation/logistics and teleCommunication sectors. In particular, the airport supports the inflow of students, teachers and parents needed to support the education sector and this demand increases the need for airlift. As the workforce becomes more educated, and therefore more competitive, transshipments increase, leveraging and expanding port facilities, telecom, and eCommerce. Increased travelers to the island support international fashion and shopping. Education enriches the cultural experience, attracting more tourists and retirees and creating a brand as an outcome of success. Education and tourism expose the island to more tourists and immigrants spawning retail and residential development (Aqualectra, 2006).

I recently proposed the vision of Curaçao 3.0 in my book Curaçao 3.0.

3.0 is the information or internet era: the world dominated by the Internet. The creative class is the driving force of society. Curaçao 2.0 is over. It is bankrupt. 3.0 is about the creative economy driven by the creative class. “The creative industries refer to a range of economic activities which are concerned with the generation or exploitation of knowledge and information. They may also be referred to as the cultural industries (especially in Europe (Hesmondhalgh 2002, p. 14)) or the creative economy (Howkins 2001).

Howkins' creative economy comprises advertising, architecture, art, crafts, design, fashion, film, music, performing arts, publishing, R&D, software, toys and games, TV and radio, and video games (Howkins 2001, pp. 88–117). Some scholars consider that education industry, including public and private services, is forming a part of creative industry.[1] There remain, therefore, different definitions of the sector (Hesmondhalgh 2002, p. 12)(DCMS 2006).Yet so far Howkins has not been internationally recognized.

The creative industries have become increasingly important to economic well-being, proponents suggesting that "human creativity is the ultimate economic resource," (Florida 2002, p. xiii) and that “the industries of the twenty-first century will depend increasingly on the generation of knowledge through creativity and innovation," (Landry &Bianchini 1995, p. 4).”

It is also about experience economy: “Pine and Gilmore argue that businesses must orchestrate memorable events for their customers, and that memory itself becomes the product - the "experience". More advanced experience businesses can begin charging for the value of the "transformation" that an experience offers,. Imagine what education offerings might do if they were able to participate in the value that is created by the educated individual. This, they argue, is a natural progression in the value added by the business over and above its inputs.[1]

Although the concept of the Experience Economy was born in the business field, it has crossed its frontiers to tourism, architecture, nursing, urban planners and other fields.”

The Strategy is to develop and attract the creative class. To do this we need the three T’s: Talent, Technology and Tolerance.

The future will not be about jobs but about employability. “Employability refers to a person's capability for gaining and maintaining employment (Hillage and Pollard, 1998). For individuals, employability depends on the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) they possess, the way they present those assets to employers, and the context (e.g. personal circumstances and labour market environment) within which they seek work (Hind and Moss, 2011). As such employability is affected by both supply-side and demand-side factors which are often outside of an individual's control.” People need to develop skills continuously to stay employable.

We see the materialization of this vision already with the start of the village of Dutch interns in Pietermaai. The Curaçao North Sea Jazz Festival and the Curaçao Rotterdam Film Festival, the arrival of the Ctex. Developments like Airport City, the Knowledge Zone (Goede et al, 2012 a), and the Creative Zone in Scharloo and Pietermaai (Goede et al, 2012 b) are part of this vision.

“The above is more or less in line with the recent draft TAC report (2013) on sustainable economic development of the island.

Many Curacao residents are in support of the closing of the facility and the government will face a major decision on January 1st 2019, when the present lease contract of Refineria di Kòrsou (RdK), with its operator Petroleos de Venezuela S.A (PDVSA) expires.”

“At present, direct and indirect employment at the refinery is estimated at some 2,250 persons (employees, contractors and employees of suppliers). The refinery contributes an estimated 5.3% to the island’s GDP, some NAf 265 million per annum. Studies have however revealed that the refinery’s contribution to GDP is gradually decreasing and is estimated to fall to about 4.7% by 2018.”

Still TAC concludes that there might be a future. The point is that Curaçao and GreenTown need a vision and a strategy or Master plan to grow the economy.

What jobs will Green Town create?

GreenTown will create jobs. In the publication of Green Town “From the dirty soil a city will rise” (2013) the following numbers of jobs are published.

Permanent Jobs to be created Conservative Probable

Entertainment Centre 800 1,800

Retail and City Services 1,500 2,000

Financial Services & Offices 1,200 3,000

Harbor Services 200 300

Containers 300 600

Ship Building & Manufacturing 2,400 3,500

Additional Free Zone 2,000 2,500

Docks / Ship Maintenance 1,500 2,000

Permanent Jobs Created by GreenTown 9,900 15,700

(Verified by Royal Haskoning DHV)

ADDITIONAL JOBS

Fisheries 200 250

Recycling 200 250

Hospitality / Tourism 1,000 1,500

Additional Jobs Created 1,400 2,000

Total Permanent Jobs to be Created 11,300 17,700

(Foundation GreenTown, 2013)

The problem with these numbers is they vary. Check a quote from a publication of Foundation GreenTown of 2012:

“According to our analysis, the Isla site alone should be able to accommodate between 6,460 and 12,010 new jobs, assuming low-rise commercial and industrial development an additional 4,000 jobs could be accommodated at adjacent sites on the east side of Schottegat, assuming a drydock relocation to the site of the asphalt lake and Curinde free zone expansion into the existing dock facilities. This would result in a net creation of roughly 10,000 to 16,000 new jobs in the study area, not including indirect impacts on the rest of the island’s economy, which would likely be stimulated by GreenTown. Moreover, the disassembly and environmental remediation of the refinery site will require hundreds or perhaps thousands of temporary workers over a period of several years, including many positions that could be filled by current PDVSA and Isla-related contractor employees, who already know the refinery site and its installations well. Many of these workers could also be retrained to work on GreenTown’s construction and related infrastructure projects, which would provide a massive direct and indirect positive economic stimulus for Curaçao, likely spanning a decade or more. (Foundation GreenTown, 2012, p. 4)”

The next quote is an important one:

“Our employment estimates are tentative - given GreenTown’s yet-uncertain development prospects - and are based largely on discussions with existing business leaders and potential investors in the project.” (FoundationGreenTown, 2012)

The jobs are mentioned, but these jobs are not linked to economic activities, visitor arrivals or ship arrivals. Opening and sharing the business case of GreenTown and the calculations and discussing it with the local community will increase it’s acceptance and this will lead to more people believing it’s a viable option.

How do these jobs compare with the current labor market situation. I will elaborate on this shortly.

One other question is whether Curaçao can attract so many visitors on a continues basis? Can we compete in the shipbuilding and repair business? We did it before. And a small island like Sint Maarten has proven to be able to attract 1.7 million cruise arrivals a year. The changes of the Panama channel open possibilities. Worldwide the Financial Services are going into difficulties. The rich countries for decades try to close the holes through which taxes escape. On the other hand the need for local food will increase as more people will move to raise their standard of living in the poor countries.

Besides the vision we need the project GreenTown globally to attract investors, promote exports, attract visitors and especially the creative class. Up to now this has not been the case.

The current situation of the labor market is the following.

Curacao is a Small Island Developing State. This fact is often neglected.SIDS are low-lying coastal countries that tend to share similar sustainable development challenges, including small but growing populations, limited resources, remoteness, susceptibility to natural disasters, vulnerability to external shocks, excessive dependence on international trade, and fragile environments. Their growth and development is also held back by high communication, energy and transportation costs, irregular international transport volumes, disproportionately expensive public administration and infrastructure due to their small size, and little to no opportunity to create economies of scale.

The SIDS were first recognized as a distinct group of developing countries at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in June 1992.

In 2009, there were approximately 4,200 job seekers registered, together with 5,900 social-security recipients. However, only less than 20 percent of this number is able to re-enter the labour market after interventional training. The rest lacks the skills to become integrated into the labour market (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2010). This puts a burden on the economy of Curaçao, since this group structurally relies on social security. In general, Curaçao lacks a skilled workforce, mostly for technical jobs. The unemployment rate may be due to a mismatch of skills: there are unemployed people willing to work, but the job vacancies do not match their competences. This is an assumption, since no data for the educational level of the unemployed in connection to jobvacancies are present. (Somer, 2012)

2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011

Population 127,893 130,191 132,207 135,474 135,250 137,124 138,642 138,564 142,180 145,406

Labor force 58,112 61,411 61,335 62,735 60,981 61,708 63,021 62,627 n/a

Employed 49,056 52,137 51,474 51,343 52,050 54,049 56,535 56,453 n/a 62,042

Unemploymentrate (%) 15.6 15.1 16.1 18.2 14.6 12.4 10.3 9.7 n/a 9.8

Source: Island Territory of Curaçao2010; CBS Labour Survey 2006; CBS 2012

If we look at the conservative figures GreenTownforcasts for additional employment of 11300, and compare it to the total employed people in 2011 of 62042 we see that this is an increase of 18%. In how many years will this be achieved?

The last 9 years we have seen an increase of 26% (62042/49056). This is an average growth rate per year of 3%.

The employment structure of Curaçao shows that most domestic income is derived from tourism. Jobs in trade, restaurants and hotels take up the biggest share, 26.8 percent of employment in 2005 (Goede, 2009). Part of this are wholesale and retail, that in 2009 accounted for almost 14 percent of GDP (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2010).

The sector expanded until 2008, accompanied by growing job opportunities. Although tourism remains a major sector on the island, due to the international financial and economic crisis, fewer tourists have arrived during 2009 and 2010 while in previous years the sector experienced growth. The decline results in fewer jobs in this sector. The financial sector also is of big importance to the economy of Curaçao since it contributed 19% to GDP in 2010. This sector employs about 1000 professionals. The total sector of banking, insurance and business services takes up 16.7% of all employment (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2011).

Looking at the employment structure, the harbour, and especially the Isla oil refinery, isanother factor that drives the economy. The Isla oil refinery employs about 1,000 people(contributed 8.5% to GDP from 2006 through 2009), and it is estimated that another 500jobs are present through private contractors that work at other parts of the harbor. The harbour and oil refinery are interrelated. How is the GreenTown going to fill this gap?

This interrelation between the Refinary and the Harbour became apparent when the export of manufactured goods declined after mechanical defects in the oil refinery in 2010. The amount of ships that moors is declining since 2008, since the regional competition is growing (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2010). The GreenTown report states the following:

“For much of the last hundred years, the Isla Refinery has been a key employer and driver of the island’s economy. Today the refinery employs about 900 people - a small fraction of Curaçao’s workforce - and it is estimated that PDVSA’s operations support an additional 900 jobs indirectly, resulting in a net impact of 1.800 jobs.” (FoundationGreenTown, 2013 p. 19)

The government of Curaçao (2012) uses slightly different numbers.

The least amount of people are employed in the agriculture, fishing and miningsector. In 2008 it was about 0.8 percent of total employment. In absolute numbers, thereare 727 people working in this sector, and this number does not show big changes over theyears. The agricultural industry, however, has potential to develop.

Most of Curacao’s soil is suitable for agriculture, especially using proper irrigation systems. Besides, domestic demand for fresh fruits and vegetables is growing, which already causes a higher variety of vegetables being grown (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2010). Also, most consumed meat is imported, domestic production has remained stable over the years while demand is increasing.

The main observed problem in the sectors agriculture, livestock and fisheries, isthe low wage sector employees get. This makes it difficult to attract workers to jobs in the agricultural sector. Additionally, it becomes harder to maintain a proper fisheries sector due to overfishing (Island Territory of Curaçao, 2011).

In the oil refinery sector as well as in agriculture, there is a shortage of skilled workers. Technologies lay behind, which slows down economic development. Overall, the economy lacks highly technically skilled employees.

The Greentown report states the following:

Tourism 26.8

Wholesale And retail 14

Financial sector 19

Refining 8.5

Agriculture 0,8

“Curaçao has a relatively small economy, but is considerably more diversified than many similar islands in the region. Curaçao’s main industries at present include tourism, international financial services, shipping and logistics. The unemployment rate has dropped slightly in recent years, with roughly 10,000 people actively seeking work. Most available jobs are in tourism or in technical jobs, whereas job seekers are more focused on the island’s relatively small commercial sector. Many of Curaçao’s job seekers have low educational levels and limited language skills, while better-educated workers have often left the island for other countries with higher earning potential, particularly the Netherlands. Many in this last group - known in Dutch as “Curaçaoenaars” - would be willing to move back to Curaçao with the right economic opportunities on the island. The population of potential return-Curaçaoenaars is estimated to be between 5,000 and 20,000.” (Stichting GreenTown, 2012, p. 16)

The estimate is that 141,000 Antilleans live in the Netherlands. Most of them are from Curaçao. An estimated 5,000 to 20,000 want to come back to Curaçao to start or continue their careers.

Situation in 2013

According to the Ministry of Economic Development (MEO) the real growth of the Curaçao economy in 2012 is 0 percent. For 2013 the expected growth of the GDP is between -0.3 and 0.7 percent. There is also a scenario of -2,5% GDP for 2013. This depends on how tourism evolves. This is the only export sector that exhibits an increase at all, and the height of private investments.

In an “optimistic scenario” tourism will increase with 7 percent in 2013 and showing the remaining export growth with 1 percent and rising private investment with 40 million guilders.

In a “cautious scenario” tourism will grow with 3 percent next year and the private investment will increase by only 15 million. Both scenarios take into account the reform of the health care and retirement.

MEO showed these forecasts during a presentation in the World Trade Center. There were also talks of the various industries: the international financial services and tourism. The Chamber of Commerce gave an explanation. But the eyes were focused on the Economic Outlook.

The presentation was done by Mr. Luelo Girigorie, policy director for MEO. He outlined an economic year 2012 that with an inflation rate of 3.3 percent (one percentage point attributable to the increased turnover tax of 5 to 6 percent) is almost stationary:

private spending -1 percent, 0 percent public spending, and private investment 0 percent; public investments -5 percent; non-tourist export 0 percent, with tourists and overnight stays over with 8 percent positive.

Even if the magnifier is put on certain sectors there are more minuses than pluses. The construction decreased, even objectively measured quantities of used stones and sand, with -4 and -2 percent respectively. The settled cargo volume in the port for local market collapsed by -1 percent (measured by weight) and even 8 percent (measured in TEUs container numbers).

The airport had 5 percent more passengers which is a positive exception. This also applies to cruise tourism which, as expected, will see a growth of 14 percent more passengers in relation to 2011.

All in all, the export is behind the import with a deteriorating balance of payments and a declining currency reserves (foreign currencies). The investments by the public sector can hardly boost the economy, given the (structural) deficit of 200 million.

Although the number of workers has increased since 2006, the unemployment rate last year was 9.8 percent (24.7 percent youth unemployment). MEO still observes a mismatch between demand and supply on the labor market, complex labor and the dismissal law, but also a large proportion of the labor force (half) has only primary education.

Consumer purchasing power is weakening, with effects on spending, while for companies costs (electricity, energy, transportation and personnel) are rising. This does not do the activities in the industry any good.

Training and the labor market

There will be always a mismatch between the skills required and the skills of the labor force. That is why education and training should be permanent, lifelong learning. This is necessary to foster employability. Curaçao has not been very successful at this. For years we have been struggling to train people for the hospitality sector and still there are not enough trained people locally available. The point is, employment is 2.0 and employability is 3.0. And Curaçao currently has a 2.0 mindset.

Curaçao is not a knowledge society, Curaçao does not value knowledge. Curaçao is not a meritocratic society. In Curaçao, just as in many SIDS, people value relationships. People offer jobs to relatives, friends and people from their network. That’s a characteristic of small island economies.

GreenTown is not an isolated project. It is a big part of society. The word economy is not used on purpose. Other big projects that will impact the society are the Airport City and Ctex. Two others are the Knowledge Zone and the Creative Zone. All these projects will require highly trained people. There is a need for a labor plan and an infrastructure to train personal. Otherwise new jobs will be created and the people are not trained for these jobs, the mismatch will continue. And we have to import people instead of providing jobs for the unemployed. Ctex started to operate and there is still no ICT Master Program being offered on the island.

As part of the vision international training centers should be attracted, not only to service to do regional market but also the local market. This dimension is neglected in the TAC report (2013). There is no role for training and research centers. And also ICT skills are not emphasized in the list of innovations in the educational system. In the Curaçao 3.0 (Goede, 2013) it is rightly stated that not only all households should have access to the internet, but also that all children should have a tablet for their education.

The organization coordinating the labor market should be upgraded. A database should be created where all people seeking employment are registered, as well as all students, but also all jobs available now and in the future.

How to implement?

You can implement GreenTown by re-inventing Curaçao. The original curve of the refinery is in decline. There is no way this refinery can be rescued. Re-inventing means that temporarily there will be two s-curves.

Figure 1: Re-invent

The challenge for Curaçao is to start a second curve before closing the refinery down. First a new economy, than GreenTown.This is also stated in the GreenTown reports:

“The proposed scope of development at GreenTown is ambitious, and has the potential to give an enormous boost to Curaçao’s economy and quality of life at all levels of the socioeconomic spectrum. But in order for the project to succeed, it must be part of a national growth strategy for the island, aimed at attracting both firms and people to Curaçao, and to stop the attrition and out-migration that have been common in recent decades. In practice, this will involve a combination of business development strategies, the growth and retention of the indigenous population, and immigration and return- migration. Attention has to be paid to education and workforce development in Curaçao, to ensure that the island has a trained and competitive labour force.” (Stichting GreenTown, 2012).

“A sound economic strategy to secure growth: GreenTown must be part of a national

growth strategy for the island, aimed at attracting both firms and people to Curaçao,

and to stop the attrition and out-migration that have been common in recent

decades.” (Stichting GreenTown, 2013).

It is about people and their employability. We need 3.0 people to work in the economy 3.0. The new opportunities will be in the Financial Sector, ICT sector, logistics, Airport, entertainment industry and so on. Much more effort should be dedicated into creating this next curve. Currently this is not the case. Two alternatives or tracks to create the second curve.The Knowledge Zone and the Airport City and a new refinery.This is why we need a new state of the art, clean, refinery at maybe Bullenbaai. This will preserve some of the jobs in the petrochemical industry and diversify the economy. But I propose to make it also a research centre and training facility where people from all over de world fly in for training. I propose the same formula for the new hospital. The hospital should be part of a school of medicine.

Planning Green Town and jobs

If we look at the number of jobs GreenTown projects, we have to remember that they will be created gradually. Some of the jobs will be realized only if the number of visitors and inhabitants of the island increase. I refer for example to the jobs in the hospitality and the entertainment industry. In the Green Town publication there is the following planning.

2012 – 2013

I

Decision to close 2012 – 2019

II

Planning and close financial deals 2015 – 2020

III

Start cleaning and prepare ground work 2020 – 2025

IV

Refinery disassembly 2020 – 2035

V

Lay foundation and start construction

In stage II only a few experts will get a job.

It is in stage III, starting in 2015 that jobs will be created by the start of cleaning and preparing the ground work. During that stage the refinery is still open.

In stage IV, starting in 2020, there will be jobs created by cleaning, preparing the ground and disassembly of the refinery. In that stage the jobs in the refinery shall stop to exist.

In stage V all sorts of jobs will be created, to start within the construction.

Only after the last stage GreenTown will be operational and tourists will start visiting Curaçao.

Conclusion

The refinery is obsolete and must be re-invented. Soon government and politicians cannot avoid this issue any longer. Much time has been spent on the constitutional debate including the issue of the joined Central Bank with Sint Maarten.The research question of this article is:

Can we calculate the number and types of jobs that will be created? GreenTown will create more than 2,250 jobs the current refinery does. The number of jobs at this stage cannot be made more specific.

To close the refinery Curaçao needs extra growth of approximately 5% and 2,250 permanent new jobs.

“At present, direct and indirect employment at the refinery is estimated at some 2,250 persons (employees, contractors and employees of suppliers). The refinery contributes an estimated 5.3% to the island’s GDP, some NAf 265 million per annum. Studies have however revealed that the refinery’s contribution to GDP is gradually decreasing and is estimated to fall to about 4.7% by 2018.” (TAC, 2013)

The problem is that Curaçao has not attained significant economic growth in years. The same goes for the creation of jobs. Creating jobs is a 2.0 mindset and strategy/ Part of the explanation is the lack of a vision and poor performance of the civil service. Curaçao must develop a vision and long term master plan based on the following trends:

• ICT is the leading technology;

• Attracting the creative class is essential;

• Local agriculture will be vital;

• It is about sustainability.

Training and research centers should establish in Curaçao to train locals and people from the globe. Much training will be delivered via the internet, but still conferences will be held on Curaçao.

References

Aqualectra (2006) Island of education and sophistication.

Arthur Andersen. (1997), 2020: Creating our Caribbean Future, Arthur Andersen, Curaçao.

Island Territory of Curaçao (2011), CURAÇAO ECONOMIC OUTLOOK 2010;En route towards the strengthening of the economic structure of new country Curaçao.

Island Territory of Curaçao (2010), CURAÇAO ECONOMIC OUTLOOK 2010; THE CROSSROAD TO AN AUTONOMOUS COUNTRY WITHIN THE DUTCH KINGDOM.

Ellen Somers, (August 23, 2012)The Knowledge Zone on Curaçao the potential of a creative economy for the sustainable development of a small island developing state, Master thesis, Universiteit van Wagening.

Goede, M. (2013) Curaçao 3.0; Hoe kunnen we Curaçao 2.0 naar het niveau 3.0 brengen?,Uitgeverij Eigen Boek B.V. te Hoofddorp

Goede, M., Rostam J. Neuwrith, G. Louisa, (2012, a) "The creation of the Knowledge Zone of Curacao: the power of a vision", Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, Vol. 10 Iss: 1, pp.52 - 64.

Goede, M., Gunnar Louisa, (2012, b), "A Case Study of the Creative Zone Scharloo and Pietermaai in Curacao", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 39 No. 11.

Goede, M. (2009), “Can Curaçao become a Creative Economy?: A case study?”, International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 36 No. 1/2.

Goede, M. (1997), 2020: Creating our Caribbean Future, Arthur Andersen, Curaçao.

Regering van Curaçao, (2012), Plan van aanpak Isla raffinaderij.

Stichting Greentown, (2012), Greentown Curaçao; Quick scan Development and Economic Outlook, Final report, 9X0177.A0.

Stichting Greentown, (2013), From dirty soil a city will rise.

TAC, (2013),STRATEGIES FOR SUSTAINABLE LONG TERM ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN CURACAO, Third Draft report, 11 February 2013

Vishon Korsou, (1999) Na kaminda pe e vishon pa Korsou.

For more information please visit: http://www.greentowncuracao.com/

Categories: Caribbean Society 3.0, Sustainable Development, Public Administation

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2 Comments

Reply Charlie Williams
4:34 PM on September 9, 2013 
I promise you I have a company that can economically clean up all the oil mess. I have a good friend on Island whom can support this. Please give me an opportunity to prove that we can we really can. Thanks Charlie
Reply Arthur Gevers
9:49 AM on August 9, 2013 
Dear Mr. Goede,
You are referring to the TAC report and concluding low contribution of Refineria Isla to the national GDP. I would like to point out that the calculations of the TAC report are not correct, and they have been informed by us. Figures from the Central bank show diffrent results. Last year, 2012 Refineria Isla contributed with 566 million Nafls to the local economy approx 10% of our GDP, according to other sources the direct + indirect employment is between 5000-6000 representing 10% almost 10% of our work force of 62000. Just last week Mr Tromp form the central bank mentioned that Refineria Isla contributes with 16% of Diviesen. Therefore the Contribution of Refineria Isla to our economy is still very significant.