August 1, 2006
The allure of Willemstad.On July 1, 2007, the Netherlands Antilles will cease to exist, and Curaçao will become a self-governing autonomous entity within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. At least, that's the plan.
Business leaders and government officials say the pending change in Curaçao's political status will dramatically boost the island's stagnant economy by eliminating unnecessary layers of bureaucracy and encouraging foreign investment. "The wind is blowing the right way. Everything will change," says Gerrit F. Schotte, Curaçao's minister of economic affairs and tourism.
He hopes that within a few years, Curaçao's $2 billion economy will be growing at 3
The island of Curaçao is shoring up economic plans for its pending departure from the Netherlands Antilles, with tourism and energy to be pillars of its autonomy.