Statia introduces COVID-19 Relief Package
On Monday October 26th the Public Entity of St. Eustatius has introduced a COVID-19 Social Relief Package with funds received from the Central Government. This relief package is being used to assist specific groups such as farmers, fisherman, the tourism and hospitality sector, residents, radio stations and foundations that are not already funded by the local or central governments.
An amount of US$ 375.000, - was received and allocated to the mentioned entrepreneurs and stakeholders, each for a specific purpose. Funds are allocated to assist fishermen and farmers formally re-establish themselves through the St. Eustatius Fisherman’s Foundation and St. Eustatius Farmers’ Cooperative.
Fishermen and farmers will be assisted to become registered in the St. Eustatius Chamber of Commerce. Farmers and fishermen who did not benefit from the SZW/EZK Relief Package will receive a one-time allocation provided this farming and fishing is their sole source of income.
Hotels are exempted from room tax from March 2020 through October 1st, 2020. Families that have difficulty covering their utility expenses may be assisted by the Unit of Social Support on a case per case basis. An amount has been allocated to support the tourism and hospitality sector to undertake joint marketing and promotion initiatives. These are all one-time contributions.
Last week stakeholders received a letter explaining the amount allocated and also the specific purpose for which the funds are intended. This Public Entity COVID 19 Relief Package is designed not to conflict or compete with the already existing Emergency Packages rolled out by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour (SZW) and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (EZK).