In 2011 the execution of the cooperation programs that are financed with development funds made available by the Netherlands, has been continued in a higher gear. The willingness and the political -administrative commitment have been high in the past year. The Countries/Islands, SONA and USONA are committing themselves to achieve that the funds intended for the cooperation programs are being optimally employed. It has been agreed upon that the Netherlands will continue to deposit the funds for the cooperation programs until December 31, 2012. The execution of the cooperation programs may be extended until the end of 2014. Given the relatively short time that remains for the execution of the projects, SONA has encouraged the entities to continue to give extra priority to the projects.
All this can be read in the Annual Report of 2011 of the SONA Foundation. SONA maintains the supervision on the legitimate and effective administration of the monies that are made available by donors for the development projects on Curaҁao, Sint Maarten, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba. The implementing organization USONA does the execution of the activities on behalf of SONA. The largest donor is the Ministry of Internal Relations and Kingdom Affairs (BZK). In addition to that SONA has been charged with the execution of the projects that are financed out of the 9th EDF (European Development Fund) from the EU and at the moment USONA is in the process of preparing the construction of a new hospital for Curaҁao, commissioned by the Curaҁao Government.
The Annual Report provides an insight in the execution of the projects of the past year that have been financed with BZK means. This execution is considered within the broader context of the cooperation programs. The shift from assessment to the execution of projects has become clearly visible in 2011. This trend will continue in 2012.
By the end of 2011 a total number of 305 Financing Agreements have been signed with the various entities which altogether represent almost 94% of the current development funds; that is an amount of 429, 5 million guilders. From the total of projects 84 % has been financially committed with Orders for Execution and of these commitments 62 % has resulted in payments. Seen in this light it appears that USONA is succeeding in preventing underspending.
BZK, SONA and USONA have in the beginning of this year conducted a work conference which has led to reaching an agreement on the new Management Agreement between BZK and SONA. The new Management Agreement will be signed in June 2012 and its duration will be until December 31, 2015.
In order to reinforce the monitoring of the project results the SONA procedure rules will be made more stringent in 2012. Strict adherence to these sharpened procedure rules will further contribute to an improved monitoring and efficient execution of the projects.
The Board of SONA is looking forward to the continuation of the productive cooperation with all entities involved.