VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne Lawyers

We have a reputation as the region’s erudite centre of legal and market developments. We probably have the largest legal library in the Dutch Caribbean and we have access to many international databases.

Also, we have more lecturers than any other firm and we invest highly in the training of our people. We proudly share our vast knowledge base as it continues to develop in the Practice Areas, via our publications, participation in committees and several regional and international magazines.

Publications

The first Aruban Day of the Supervisory Board, which took place on 22 January 2015, was a successful launch edition. This annual seminar has been organized by VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne on Curacao for a number of years now, and the firm also introduced the concept on Bonaire recently. The documentation can be downloaded below:
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Introduction
“Rise, fellow-countrymen, rise. The soil of Suriname is calling you. Wherever our ancestors came from. We should build our country*.”  This quote from the Surinamese national anthem is legally supported by the Act of 21 January 2014, establishing the status of Persons of Surinamese Descent and the Rights and Obligations arising from that Status (“PSA Act”). The PSA Act, also referred to as the “Diaspora Act” – due to the fact that people who used to be citizens of Suriname left Suriname because of various historical circumstances to settle elsewhere – allows people of Surinamese descent to live and work in Suriname without a visa or work permit under the conditions laid down in the PSA Act.
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The World Bank very recently brought its report 2015 on how easy or difficult it is for a local entrepreneur to open and run a business in Surinam when complying with relevant regulations. The report measures Surinam regulations affecting 11 areas in the life cycle of a business:
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Every two years, TNS NIPO researches the bottlenecks experienced by entrepreneurs in the Netherlands. This research was done for the last time in 2013. The top 15 of the largest bottlenecks includes the numerous rules and administrative burdens in the 6th position. According to the research, entrepreneurs are very much affected by all rules and have the feeling that the government does not make it any easier for them. What about Bonaire, and what obstacles do the entrepreneurs encounter in this ‘public body?
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In a recent St. Maarten case, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that citizens of the United States can live and work on the island of St. Maarten without requiring a work permit. This right is derived from the American-Dutch Friendship Treaty of 1956 (which is also applicable to St. Maarten and the other former Dutch Antilles) and allows American citizens the same rights and benefits accorded to Dutch citizens.
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In this article, dated July 2013, we reported on increased activities between Curacao and Suriname, which was evidenced, for instance, by negotiations between the two countries on two treaties in the making. One of the treaties deals with the Reciprocal Recognition and Enforcement of Judgment and Authentic Acts (notarial deeds) in Civil Matters, while the other treaty under negotiation is a tax treaty, which sees on avoiding double taxation and the prevention of tax evasion on income and capital. So far, these treaties have not come into existence.

In this follow-up article, we discuss a third treaty, being the Treaty on the Reciprocal Protection of Investments between the Kingdom of The Netherlands and the Republic of Suriname, which is already in force and was entered into on 31 March 2005.
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On 20 November, VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne organized the annual Day of the Supervisory Board in Curacao. Over 50 participants attended presentations of four speakers:
  1. Frank Kunneman – Quid pro quo: the wondrous ways of the (badly?) paid supervisor
  2. Kimberley de l’Isle – The legal position of the supervisor
  3. Robbert Kroon – Towards an effective board
  4. Wendell Meriaan – De fiscale aspecten van de honorering van de toezichthouder
The presentations can be downloaded here (in Dutch). The presentations were followed by an animated Q&A- and discussion round, of which an extract can be downloaded here.
 
VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne and The Galan Group have organized the Day of the Supervisory Board on Curacao for some years now. In cooperation with the Bonaire Holding Maatschappij, this concept was introduced to Bonaire on Friday 17 October as well. With over 50 participants, this first edition was fully booked.
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On 28 November, VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne organized the Day of the Supervisory Board in cooperation with The Galan Group and Linkels & Partners. With over 60 participants and a lively panel discussion, the Day was a succesful edition of the annual event. Robbert Kroon (The Galan Group) acted as moderator and introduced six keynote speakers: Nelson Navarro (Minister of Justice) opened the day, followed by presentations by Donald de Palm (Advisor Corporate Governance), Mike Willem (president Evaluation Committee Corporate Governance), John Soliano (director Bonaire Holding Maatschappij), Harald Linkels (Linkels & Partners) and Frank Kunneman (VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne). The five presentations that were held during this day can be downloaded on our website now.
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In Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba, new legislation is currently being developed in order to regulate the production and distribution of electricity and drinking water. With this new legislation, the government aims to realize reliable, affordable, sustainable and high-quality service that is guaranteed for all consumers. On 1 November, the consultation phase in this regard was closed, and VanEps Kunneman VanDoorne has contributed with a reaction to the draft act.
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