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LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT

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The capital of Curaçao, the city of Willemstad, has been for centuries long a trading post and a central point in the North-South and East-West trading between continents and countries.

As a colonial trade settlement it shares a common cultural history with other counterpart cities in the Caribbean region. With its natural harbour the historic Area of Willemstad is a historic port town laid out in a setting of natural waters. Willemstad’s entire city center has been recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site.

The combination of its history together with the beauty of the physical infrastructure has been rediscovered as a tourism and leisure investment opportunity. This has led to more restoration of the inner city, with a concentration in the Pietermaai and the Scharloo District; the Pietermaai District was recently the scene of a successful international Jazz Festival.

Whereas living on the upper floors of the stores has vanished throughout the years, recently it has also been rediscovered and has been adding to the ambiance and rich atmosphere of the old city centre.

Following a period of fiscal adjustments, Curaçao has repositioned itself as an attractive tourist destination, attracting new investments. The industry is the leading pillar of our economy and in this edition we are publishing an interview with dr. Tico Croes, whom has been leading an international team which assisted Curaçao with the design and engineering of its Tourism Master Plan for the coming years, targeting those whom love to enjoy the diversity of the island during vacations. The Masterplan has gone through varios stages and is now ready to be approved by the Parliament as the way forward for the industry.

There are various articles that inform you of how our economy is moving forward and also information for the Curacao Business community. Enjoy this edition of Business Curacao. Let us know you comments.

William (Billy) Jonckheer