Jurisdiction Project

St. Eustatius (Statia)

Sint Eustatius, also known as Statia, is one of the islands which make up the Netherlands Antilles. Over its long history, it changed hands more than 20 times. The island has remained in Dutch hands since 1816. Vocanic in origin, and quite rugged along the coastal areas, it was once one of the busiest and most powerful commercial ports in the Caribbean. As a result of the British blockade during America's Revolutionary War, most goods destined for the new colonies flowed into St. Eustatius. It was not uncommon to see hundreds of supply ships off Oranjestad. When that war ended and mail and supplies were sent directly to the new United States, the economy of St. Eustatius changed dramatically. According to tradition, it was the first foreign port to salute (1776) the American flag. Tourism is the major industry today, and the island is a favorite destination for scuba diving aficionados and nature lovers.

Highest point = Mt. Mazinga, 1,968 ft. (602m) St. Eustatius is hilly with a central flat plain. Sandy beaches are rare. Geographically, the island is saddle-shaped, with the 602 meter-high Mount Mazinga, colloquially called the Quill (a dormant volcano) to the southeast and the smaller pair Signal Hill/Little Mountain and Boven Mountain to the northwest. The bulk of the island's population lives in the "dip" between the two areas, which crosses the center of the island. The island is just 5 miles long and 2 miles wide; area: 21 sq. km.

It is in the northern, Leeward Islands portion of the West Indies, some distance southeast of the Virgin Islands. It forms part of the inner arc of the Leeward Island chain, lying immediately to the northwest of Saint Kitts and Nevis and to the southeast of Saba. Statia is 150 miles east of Puerto Rico, 90 miles east of St. Croix, 38 miles south of St. Maarten and 17 miles southeast of Saba.

Latitude and Longitude:
Lat: 17.50º N Long : 63.00º W

Time Zone:
GMT -4

Total Land Area:


Tropical. Generally dry and sunny. Light constant northeast trade winds bring constant cool breezes and sufficient moisture to keep the average daytime temperature down to about 27 degrees Celsius. The average night temperature drops to a comfortable 23 degrees. Rainfall occurs in showers of medium duration during the months of April, June and September.

Natural Resources:
The volcanic mountains are not high enough to encourage sufficient cloud condensation to produce a great deal of rainwater, so there is no fresh groundwater. There are no rivers or brooks, therefore most household dwellings have cisterns or deep underground wells. Waste water is deposited into in-ground septic tanks.


Total GDP:

Per Capita GDP:
1981 4,340.00 USD
2004 11,400.00 USD

% of GDP per Sector:
  Primary Secondary Tertiary
2001 85.1% 14.9% %

% of Population Employed by Sector
  Primary Secondary Tertiary

External Aid/Remittances:

In its Government Program the Island Government has identified six (6) areas of priority areas for sustainable island development. Among these is sustainable economic development with the focus on: Tourism, Medical, Infrastructure, Agriculture& Fisheries, Harbor, Airport.

Labour Force:
1992 870
2001 1,038

Year: Unemployment Rate (% of pop.)
1992 5.8%
2001 8.3%

St Eustatius earns a modest income from agriculture and from a major petroleum trans-shipment programme, but it is tourism that dominates the economy.

Niche Industry:
Ecotourism - Dive sites range from coral reefs, drop-offs and canyons to historical and recent wrecks. There are also botanical gardens, hiking trails, and an extinct volcano to enjoy. Three National Park areas (St. Eustatius Marine Park, Quill Boven National Park, Miriam C. Schmidt Botanical Gardens)protect the high biodiversity and unique tropical ecosystems present on both land and sea and the total protected area covers 33km2 - almost twice the size of the island of St Eustatius. The national parks system was initiated by the Island Government in 1996 to protect diverse habitats on and around the island. The Government delegated management authority for the parks to a local NGO – St Eustatius National Parks Foundation. Numerous endangered or critically endangered species are protected through active research and monitoring programmes, including three species of sea turtles, the Antillean Iguana, Red Bellied Racer Snake, orchids, cacti and the endemic vine ‘Statia Morning Glory’.

In 1994 a "Tourism Policy of Sint Eustatius 1995-1997" was approved by the Executive Council. The Government recognizes the importance of tourism for the Island economy as well as the welfare and well being of the population. 9,600 people visit the country every year, with 26 percent coming from the U.S. The development is based on a carefully planned policy. Important is to minimize disruptive ethnic, sociocultural and environmental effects associated with tourism development. The Government shall stimulate and foster ownership and management by Statians but welcomes also foreign investment. The Government will provide all information necessary to investors timely and will support any investment incentive applicable such as tax-holidays. All legislation to preserve nature and historical buildings are in place, the Historical Core Plan, Statia Marine Park, Botanical Garden, protection of flora and fauna, and sites of historical importance, are in process for approval of the Executive Council and Island Council, such as the establishment of two nature parks and a Monument Ordinance. 2001 Census information shows 71 cruise ships stopped at this island that year with 10,505 passengers.


Imports and Exports:

Almost all consumer goods are imported, with Venezuela, the US, Europe and Japan being the main suppliers

Tot. Value of Imports 0.00 ()
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Partners Outside EU:
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Number of Airports: 1
Statia's airport is FD Roosevelt (EUX), located 1km (0.6 miles) from Oranjestad. Although at present the island can only be reached through St. Maarten, other hubs in the area are Puerto Rico and Antigua, both approx. 45 minutes flight, and St. Kitts, approx. 10 minutes flight. Windward Island Airways has 5 daily scheduled flights out of St. Maarten.

Number of Main Ports: 1
The present port was built in 1993 and consist of an 80 meters long breakwater with a harbour- light and an 8 meters wide, 60 meters long pier with Ro-Ro accommondation of 15 meters wide. The harbour is suitable for vessels up to 600 DWT and 175 feet long but also vessels of 4.000 DWT moored along the pier as long as their depth has a maximal of 4 meters.





Other Forms of Transportation:

Economic Zones:

Energy Policy:

Year Total Energy Production (Mwh) Thermic (Mwh) Geothermic (Mwh) Other (Mwh) Total Energy Consumption (Mwh) Domestic (Mwh) Commercial (Mwh) Public Service (Mwh) Industry (Mwh) Public Lighting (Mwh)
2001 10,300 0 0 0 11,000 0 0 0 0 0


Official Currency:
Netherlands Antillean guilder

Banking and Insurance:
Number of Banks and Credit Unions: 3
Number of Agricultural Credit Unions:
Number of Insurance Companies:

 First Caribbean International Bank is open Mondays to Fridays from 08.30 hours -15.30 hours. The Post Office Bank, Post Spaarbank opens Mondays to Fridays from 07.30 - 16.00 hours. The Windward Island Bank is open Mondays to Fridays from 08.30-12.00 hours and 13.30 - 15.30 hours.

Financial Services:

A new tax incentive agreement, effective March 2007, allows U.S. taxpayers to claim a tax deduction for expenses associated with a convention held in the Netherlands Antilles to the same extent as a convention held in the US. Expenses incurred while attending conventions, business meetings and seminars on the island are allowed as deductions according to the same regulations as the islands was a U.S. territory.

Public Ownership:
There are three types of land tenure: regular landed property, hereditary tenure or long lease, and the renting of government land. For economic purposes, especially in the oil and tourism industries, government lands are rented in long renewable leases.

Land Use:
The Government does not sell land, only long lease for properties used for business purposes. Before approval by the Executive Council a study is carried out on the area that is to developed and if it is according to the Zoning Ordinance and the Hindrance Ordinance of the Island Territory. There is approximately 30.000 m2 beach property available for tourism development on long lease terms at the historical Lower Town area. Depending the total investment, employment and contribution to the total community the long lease charges are negotiable.

Poor soils and inadequate water supplies hamper the development of agriculture. Within the Quill National Park, varying types of habitat are protected, ranging from elfin forest at the top of the Quill volcano to thorny woodland on the lower slopes.

Marine Activity:

Fish communities are a major resource of coral reefs and marine protected areas. They play an important role in coral reef ecosystems and are commercially important for both fisheries and tourism. There are about 25 fishermen on the island of St. Eustatius, three of which can be considered professional fishermen. Most of the fishermen are parttime, as they have a fixed on-shore job. Principal fishing methods used by fishermen were reported to be traps, hook and line, trawling and occasionally nets. The Spiny Lobster, Panulirus argus, fishing industry is without a doubt the most important commercial fishery on the island. Consequently, the lobster trap is the most common fishing gear on the island, with each fisherman possessing approximately 15-20 lobster traps. Depending on the weather, sea conditions, and season, the traps are hauled twice a week.The lobster fishery is a seasonal activity which begins in 5 September and ends in April.The principal fishing grounds were reported to be in four areas: 1. On the Atlantic side of the island in line with Bargine Bay to south of Compagnie Bay, from a depth of around 25 meters and for a distance of one nautical mile east. 2. In the area south of White Wall in waters of 15-30 meters depth. 3. On the Caribbean side of the island from Cocoluch Bay to Jenkins Bay from 30 meters depth and for a distance of around one nautical mile west. 4. Traps were also laid in Oranje Bay from 26-35 meters depth and in the area of Gallows Bay immediately south of the City Pier. Following an inventory of the fishing sector of St. Eustatius carried out in February 2004, it was stated that fisherman primarily fish on the narrow shelf surrounding the island.

Marine Life:
clams, wahoo, tuna, dolphin, lobster, conch, snapper, and grouper

Critical Issues:
Oils spills in the port area is a public health concern. Tankers are causing damage such as: • Broken individual coral colonies • Structural damage to the reefs • Sedimentation



Political System:
Type: Parliamentary. Independence: Part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Constitution: December 1954, Statute of the Realm of the Netherlands, as amended. Branches: Executive--monarch represented by a governor-general (chief of state), prime minister (head of government), Cabinet. Legislative--unicameral parliament. Judicial--Joint High Court of Justice appointed by the monarch. Subdivisions are by island: Saba, Sint Eustatius, Sint Maarten, Bonaire, Curaçao. Suffrage: Universal at 18.

Political Parties:
St. Eustatius Democratic Party (DP--St. Eustatius); St. Eustatius Alliance (SEA); People’s Labor Party (PLP).

Important Legislation:
Protected under island legislation, St. Eustatius Marine Park, established in 1996, has been actively managed since 1998; it encompasses all waters surrounding St. Eustatius out to a depth of 30 m and the park contains two no-take zones to protect and replenish fish stocks. MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING ON THE FUTURE CONSTITUTIONAL STATUS OF BONAIRE, ST. EUSTATIUS, AND SABA AGREED DURING THE MINI-CONFERENCE HELD ON OCTOBER 10 & 11, 2006, IN THE HAGUE: Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba will obtain a new constitutional status within the constitution of the Netherlands. This can be effected by constituting the islands as public entities within the meaning of article 134 of the [Dutch] Constitution.In the Agreement of Principles it has been agreed that the Netherlands Antilles will cease to exist as a distinct governmental entity. In the new constitutional set-up the Netherlands will be responsible for law enforcement and the administration of justice on St. Eustatius. In the new constitutional set-up St. Eustatius shall have a balanced budget, as well as a balanced long-range perspective. At the outset of the new constitutional set-up the budget must be balanced in accordance with internationally accepted budgetary principles, as are applied also by the Dutch government. As is the case at present, in the new constitutional set-up the islands will not be authorized to borrow money.

Principal Taxes:
PROFIT TAX (CORPORATE INCOME TAX):A levy of Profit Tax is applicable to corporations as Public Limited Liability Companies, Partnerships, and Foundations that take aim at profit making. The local activities will be considered for tax generally at a standard rate of 34.5% of profits and is payable to the Island Receiver. The law provides various incentives in order to stimulate investment. These incentives include tax credits on investments, depreciation acceleration, and tax holidays. (The latter is elaborated on in the tax holiday section of incentives in accordance with the New Fiscal Frame Work NFR). WAGE TAX AND INCOME TAX:Wage tax is based on a P.A.Y.E. (Pay As You Earn) system. The employer has the responsibility of deducting wage tax and premiums from the salaries of employees and paying these amounts to the Island Receiver. Income tax is the summary of wage taxes and taxes on any other form of income. Wage tax is viewed as a pre-payment of income tax and is therefore deductible. Below is a table of income tax rates based on an annual income. >10,800NLG 0%; up to 27.400NLG 15,60%; 39.500NLG 23,40%; 52.200NLG 32,50%; 69.200NLG 39,00%; 116.800NLG 46,80%; 116.800+NLG 57,20%. MEDICAL INSURANCE PREMIUM ZV/AVBZ 1. The abbreviations ZV / AVBZ stand for 'Health Insurance' and 'General Insurance on Special Medical Expenses.' The premium for health insurance is 10.4% and is divided in 8.3% employer contribution, 2.1% employee contribution. The AVBZ is a social insurance against risks that are difficult to insure. This regards illnesses of long duration (chronic), long hospitalization, psychiatric nursing, relief and care of mentally and physically handicapped persons. The premium is 2% of monthly salary and is divided in 1.5% on the account of the employee and 0.5% on the employer. The ZV/AVBZ premiums are also paid in the same manner of the Wage Tax payment schedule. TURNOVER TAX (TOT) Turnover Tax is a tax on business turnover and services realized by entrepreneurs or businesses in accordance with their business in St. Eustatius. This tax is an indirect tax with the character of a consumption tax and is not imposed on imports. The payments are made on a monthly bases to the Federal Receiver. There are two tax rates for turnover tax: Certain basic necessities, The overall taxed rate is 3% on all deliveries of goods and services.

Associated Power:
Netherland Antilles,

Dutch Antillean, EU passport.

The Government Structure The Netherlands Antilles consists of five (5) islands, namely: Curaçao, Bonaire, St. Maarten, St. Eustatius and Saba. The Netherlands Antilles is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which also includes Aruba and the Netherlands. The Netherlands Antilles enjoys self-determination on all internal matters and defers to the Netherlands in matters of defence, foreign policy, and judicial functions. The Netherlands Antilles is governed by what is referred to as the Federal or Central Government. It is made up of 22 senators that form the Parliament. Each island is represented in parliament. Ministers are put in place to take charge of the daily operation of the Federal Government. Ministers are supported by the various federal departments. A governor-general, who serves a 6-year term, represents and is appointed by the Monarch of the Netherlands, Her Majesty Queen Beatrix. In the Netherlands Antilles local governments are assigned authority independently on each island under the direction of a Kingdom-appointed Island Governor. These local governments consist of an Island council and an Executive Council (administrative body). The Island Council of the Island Territory of St. Eustatius consists of five members and is chaired by the Governor of Sint Eustatius. The Island council in turn appoints two (2) commissioners who along with the Governor of Sint Eustatius forms the Executive Council. The Executive Council of St. Eustatius is made up of commissioners who inturn are responsible for various portfolios, where under you will find the government departments or foundations. Every four (4) years an Island election is called where members are elected to the Island Council.


Population: 2699; Males: 1330; Females 1369. Area: 21 sq. km. Population density per sq. km. Dec. 2004: 129.

Island Area (km sq.) Population % of Total Population

Population is predominantly of African descent. During the peak of the slave trade, many Africans were forcibly brought to the island to work on more than 70 plantations. When slavery was banned in the late 1700s, the people of this country easily began to live in harmony. Islanders share a pleasant nature and a strong work ethic that is evident across the Dutch Caribbean. More than twenty nationalities live, work, and play together peacefully on this quiet island.

Year Resident Population

Age of Population: 0-14 15-24 25-49 50-64 65 and up
2001 620 254 930 289 199
2007 640 330 1,123 403 203


Immigration statistics 2004: 255; Emigration statistics 2004: 253. TAKEN FROM THE ST. EUSTATIUS BUSINESS ASSOCIATION MIGRATION POLICY PLAN: The main areas of focus in this program are: • infra structure investments and investment climate • Statia’s tourism product and tourism marketing • Small business development and the development of other sectors Bottlenecks and challenges to make these goals a reality are, among others, the outdated standard of many local businesses, the lack of capital for investment, our economy of scale and the lack of sufficient people in the local labor market. The base for a healthy and vibrant economy is too small with a population of only three thousand five hundred people. This results in the lack or shortage of public services and utilities or too high cost per capita. For instance due to the size of the population only basic health care is available on the island. In education it is not possible to complete high school locally. Up to this present date and time the island does not have a water distribution network. Besides the inconvenience and inequality this creates in comparison with other residents of the Netherlands Antilles, it also results in an insurmountable burden for the government, the private sector as well as each individual resident. We have at present two major businesses on the island that in the opinion of STEBA are very sensitive with regard to immigration policy. Both companies are acknowledged by the Government as very important to the island economy. First there is the Medical School that relies on foreign students coming from abroad to do their studies in Statia. Also professors are not readily available in Statia and in the Netherlands Antilles. Lengthy and strenuous procedures are hampering the ability of the school to survive or to grow. The second is the Oil Terminal, which is facing similar constraints.

Crude Birth Rate:
2003 1.5%

Life Expedctancy:
Males: 70.6 yrs. Females: 79 yrs. Crude mortality rates: 7.5 deaths per 1000(2005).

Crude Death Rate:
2002 0.76%
2005 0.64%

Mixed black 85%, Carib Amerindian, white, East Asian, and Dutch

Class Division:

Dutch is the official language. English is the most commonly spoken. Papiamentu (a mixture of Portuguese, Spanish, English and Dutch words) is the third language.

Baptist, Catholic, Protestant, others. The following religions have services on the island: Seventh Day Adventist, Methodist, Roman Catholic, Jehovah Witnesses, Bahai Faith, Baptist, Anglican, Apostolic Faith, Pentecostal and World of Faith Ministry.

 96.3% adult m/f.

Education System:
The education system is European and more specifically, Dutch. General Instruction is given in the Dutch language. English and Spanish are also taught in the schools. The range of educational facilities include primary, elementary, secondary and vocational. Scholarships, loans and grants are available for further study in the Netherlands, the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean. Education in the Netherlands Antilles is based on the principle that each child, regardless of religious faith, race or social status, has to be given the opportunity to develop him or her self completely. Primarily it is expected that the aim should be to strive to form the child to be an acceptable member of the society, in accordance with his or her individual capacities and natural abilities. St. Eustatius is organized in the same manner as the Dutch system. THE DUTCH SCHOOL SYSTEM:Children may go to school when they reach the age of 4, but they must go, when they are 5. The children then go to the primary school. This school is divided in 8 groups. The first two levels are kindergarten. When the children leave group 8, they go to the secondary school. There are 3 levels:1. VMBO (4 years) 2. HAVO (5 years) 3. VWO (6 Years). VWO is the most difficult and VMBO is the least difficult. VMBO Students will have a practical occupation, for example carpenter, butcher, etc. HAVO Students can go to college. They can for example become a teacher. VWO Students can go to university.

Total Pre-schools:(2007) 4
Total Primary Schools  
First Level:
Second Level:
Third Level:
Total Secondary Schools: 1
Total Professional Schools


Number of Schools per Island:
St. Eustatius (Statia)


Students Enrolled:


Sint Eustatius boasts a fully functioning, highly reputable, medical university, the University of Sint Eustatius School of Medicine, with more than 100 students. The CBSNA collects data on public schools only. 2001 census data indicates 98 people worked in the education field.

Medical Services:
Queen Beatrix Medical Center: 20 beds. There is one Geriatric home which has 13 beds. There are three physicians on the island, 1 specialist and 2 general practitioners. One of the physicians ownes a pharmacy, as well. There are no dentists or midwives but there is one paramedic.


 The first settlement in Sint Eustatius was established in 1636 and changed hands between the Dutch, French, and Spanish 22 times in its history. In the 18th century the island became a duty-free port for overburdened colonizers shipping back to the homeland, which propelled it into a major port with rapid population growth that lost momentum after the American-British peace treaty in 1783.As the eighteenth century drew to a close St. Eustatius gradually lost its importance as a trading center and most merchants and planters left the Island, leaving their homes and warehouses. Through the nineteenth- and early twentieth-centuries Statia became and remained a quiet island waiting to be discovered by history minded visitors. Fortunately, in the 1960's and 70's, the people of Statia became increasingly aware of the cultural value of their unique heritage and initiatives were taken to preserve and maintain it. According to tradition, in 1776 it was the first foreign port to salute the American flag.

Voters in the Netherlands Antilles have opted to dismantle the Netherlands Antilles and create new structures between the various islands and the Kingdom. St. Maarten and Curacao have opted for an autonomous country status within the Kingdom similar to Aruba's status. Saba, Sint Eustatius, and Bonaire have opted for closer ties to the Kingdom. The target date for implementing these changes is December 15, 2008, but it is unclear if this target will be met.

Recent Significant Events:
CONSTITUTIONAL STATUS - St. Eustatius is acquiring a new constitutional status within the Kingdom of the Netherlands which should go into effect December 15th 2008. At this date the island will become a governing authority within the Netherlands. FLAG - St. Eustatius adopted its flag on 16 November 2004 (Statia Day).Flag Description : The flag is rectangular with the colors blue, red, white, gold and green. The flag is divided in four five-sided blue squares, each fimbriated red. In flag center is a diamond-form white field. In the diamond is the silhouette of the island in green. In the center in the top of the diamond is a five-pointed golden star. COAT OF ARMS - The coat of arms was also adopted on Statia Day, 16 November, 2004. The design of the coat-of-arms is by Walter Hellebrand and has a motto in Latin: "SUPERBA ET CONFIDENS" meaning Proud and Confident. TURTLE TRACKING - The Netherlands Antilles is party to a number of international agreements which protect sea turtles. Since the early 1990s the Netherlands Antilles ratified the Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW) Protocol and in 1999 the Inter-American Convention for the Protection and Conservation of Sea Turtles (IAC), both of which require full protection of sea turtles as well as their habitats and nesting areas.

Music, Dance, Handicraft and Patrimony:
The music of the Netherlands Antilles is a mixture of native, African and European elements, and is closely connected with trends from neighboring islands like Martinique, Trinidad and Guadeloupe.



St. Eustatius: Treasure Island of the Caribbean






St. Eustatius, Treasure Island of the Caribbean http://books.google.com/books?id=BaZjQPRwoKIC&pg=PA54&lpg=PA54&dq=egalitarianism+statia&source=web&ots=MAj7b23_iV&sig=JHsg42vi5DXvpQ6sSAMQWubBUnQ#PPA58,M1







http://www.unesco.org/education/wef/countryreports/netherlands_antilles/rapport_1.html. Central Bureau of Statistics Netherlands Antilles: http://www.cbs.an/

http://islands.unep.ch/IST.htm#1230 http://www.statiagovernment.com City Population. http://www.citypopulation.de/NedAntillen.htmlPanAmHO. http://www.paho.org/HIA/archivosvol2/paisesing/Netherlands%20Antilles%20English.pdf








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