WHO WE ARE
In 2017, Hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated the island of Sint Maarten. The World Bank estimated the damages and losses caused by Hurricane Irma to Sint Maarten to be $2.73 billion. Ninety percent of all infrastructure was affected, with tourism—the country’s biggest industry taking a huge hit.
Due to Sint Maarten’s location and dependence on tourism, it is highly vulnerable to natural disasters, which may happen more frequently due to climate change. Sint Maarten needs to be prepared.
The Sint Maarten Reconstruction, Recovery and Resilience Trust Fund was launched in April 2018 as a tripartite partnership between the government of the Netherlands, government of Sint Maarten, and the World Bank to help the country rebuild stronger and more sustainably to support longer-term development priorities.
The current fund portfolio is US$519 million, with recipient-executed projects addressing the country’s most critical needs—strengthening institutions, building capacity, making infrastructure climate-resilient, and improving social and economic cohesion.
The Sint Maarten Trust Fund is financed by the government of the Netherlands, administered by the World Bank, and implemented by the government and people of Sint Maarten. Initially envisioned to run through 2019–2025, the fund has been extended to the end of 2028.
The fund’s Steering Committee allocates its resources by consensus to recovery projects and capacity-building activities. The committee is composed of one representative from each partner and meets twice per year. A working group comprising technical staff drawn from each of the three partners prepares the groundwork for these meetings.
In 2018, Sint Maarten developed a National Recovery and Resilience Plan as a roadmap for building back better following the hurricanes. The plan provides a framework for emergency projects prioritized by the governments of Sint Maarten and the Netherlands, with technical guidance from the World Bank.
The Trust Fund Strategic Framework 2019–2025 is based on the National Recovery and Resilience Plan. The Steering Committee approved project priorities under three focus areas.
The government of Sint Maarten or its designated implementation agencies implement most Sint Maarten Trust Fund activities. The World Bank provides hands-on implementation support, analytical work, and project preparation and implementation advice.
Five organizations execute or manage the projects: