New Legislation and Regulations effective from 1 January, 2022

With effect from 1 January 2022, the BES Chambers of Commerce and Industry Act, the BES Commercial Registers Act 2009, the BES Commercial Registers Decree 2009 and the BES Chambers of Commerce and Industry Elections Decree will be revised.

The changes in the new legislation and regulations mainly apply to:

– The elections of Chamber board members

– The duties of the Chamber

– The fees for a number of activities and products, which the Chamber provides.

The modernization of these laws and regulations will enable the Bonaire Chamber of Commerce to perform its tasks more efficiently and effectively, and in a way that fits in with the current spirit of the times. An explanation of the most important changes is detailed below. For a complete overview, please refer to the texts of the relevant legislation and regulations.

Board Member Elections

A number of important changes involve the election of board members to the Chamber of Commerce Board. A distinction between representatives of large and small companies will no longer be made. From now on elections will take place every three years, rather than every year. Additionally, instead of just electing part of the board as previously, the entire board will be appointed simultaneously in the new election.

Candidates may stand for election between 1 and 14 November. If it is necessary for a vote to be held, it is required to be held within 30 days of this period. If a board member (has to) resign between elections, no new election will be called as long as at least three board members still remain. If less than three board members remain, the Executive Council of the Public Entity Bonaire will appoint a new board member. Voting will only be required where there are more candidates than available board positions. A notice of election will only be published in local newspapers and other channels. Notices will no longer be distributed.

Duties and Powers

The Chamber of Commerce’s duties will be expanded to include providing information and advice to the Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate such as, for example, supporting the Ministry’s economic policy. The Chamber will remain responsible for the Commercial Register and for providing appropriate advice to entrepreneurs

Chamber of Commerce Budget

The new legislation includes a section detailing the budget cycle and financial supervision thereof. Specific dates are included in the law for the submission of the budget to the Executive Council and to the Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate. This also applies to the submission of the audited annual financial statements.

 Rates registration fee and annual contribution

The annual contribution rates for organizations registered in the Commercial Register will depend upon their legal structure and it will no longer be determined on the basis of subscribed capital. For public limited (NV) and private limited (BV) companies, a distinction will be made between small and large NVs and BVs on the basis of the number of registered officers. Small NVs and BVs (with only one official registered in the Commercial Register) will fall into a lower category than NVs and BVs with several registered officials. In order to be able to calculate the annual contribution, a minimum basic amount must be multiplied by the applicable multiplier for that legal entity. In accordance to the financial regulation, the basic amount as of January 2022 is $60.

The basic rate was adjusted on April 29, 2022 in response to concerns expressed and the feedback provided by individual entrepreneurs and business representatives with regard to the level of the new annual contribution. Originally the basic rate was $80. Entrepreneurs who have already paid an annual contribution or who have newly registered during 2022 will receive a refund. The Chamber will actively address all such cases.

Below you will find an overview of these rates for the annual contribution, broken down by legal structure.

jaarlijkse_bijdrage+kvk_bonaire_en

The annual contribution of a subsidiary is equal to the annual contribution of the main entity.

Rates other services

The rates for the other products provided by the Bonaire Chamber of Commerce are as follows:

kvk_bonaire_tarieven_overige producten_EN

Wet KvK BES 2022

Kiesbesluit KvK BES 2022

Handelsregisterwet BES 2022

Handelsregisterbesluit BES 2022

Financiële regeling Handelsregister BES

Amendment to the Financial Regulation Commercial Register 2022 BES (stcrt-11432)

Historic Information.

The Chamber of Commerce can provide you with an overview of the changes that have occurred during the course of a company or organization’s history, such as changes of officials or trading name changes. You may request information for the entire period of existence of an organization, or for a limited period of time. To obtain an extract with such information, please send an email to handelsregister@kvkbonaire.com stating the organization’s name and Chamber of Commerce number.

 Statements about Commercial Register Data

The Chamber of Commerce can also provide you with an overview of data recorded in the Commercial Register. This could be, for example, an overview of all directors or all previous addresses for a certain company, or simply whether a particular person was an authorized director on a certain date. To obtain such a statement, please send an email to handelsregister@kvkbonaire.com detailing the name, the organization’s Chamber of Commerce number and your specific request.

Company List

The Chamber of Commerce also provides entrepreneurs with company lists. Companies’ business activities are included in the Commercial Register and these activities are divided into one principal activity and a maximum of three secondary activities. This classification has been made on the basis of the Standard Business Classification (SBI) as determined by the Central Bureau of Statistics in the Netherlands. This format has also been internationally accepted and is used globally. You may request a list based on this classification for companies located on Bonaire. An example of this would be an overview of all car washes or all bakeries on Bonaire. The data will be delivered to you in an Excel file and you will have to pay $0.56 per company (with a minimum of $8.38 per order). Click HERE to request a company list.

Certificate of Origin

The Chamber of Commerce will issue a “Certificate of Origin” to entrepreneurs who produce goods on Bonaire. During export entrepreneurs may use this certificate in order to demonstrate that their goods were manufactured on Bonaire. To obtain a certificate you can send an email to handelsregister@kvkbonaire.com.  You should specify the number, kind and type of goods, together with the price. This information will be stated on the certificate. After you pay the fee for this certificate, you may collect it from the Chamber of Commerce.

Renting Meeting Rooms

The Chamber of Commerce has a training room and several meeting rooms. For current rates and availability of these rooms, please contact administratie@kvkbonaire.com. Please clearly state the number of people you wish to accommodate and the date and time of the meeting. You will receive a prompt response with the availability and the rental rate for a meeting room. It is also possible to arrange catering according to your wishes during your meeting.

Frequently asked questions

  • Why are the fees increased?

    All fees are adjusted, for the first time in 10 years: some fees will increase, others decrease, depending on the type of legal entity.

  • Who has decided this?

    The fee changes are an integral part of the legislative changes: this has been realized through Parliament as is usual for legislative changes.

    This is not decided by the (board of) the Chamber of Commerce.

  • Who decides what the fees will be?

    The Chamber of Commerce fees are decided upon by the Minister of Economic and Climate Affairs.

    This is not decided by the (board of) the Chamber of Commerce.

  • Who supervises the Chamber of Commerce?

    The Ministry of Economic and Climate Affairs supervises how the Chamber of Commerce function

  • What was the decision process for the new legislation?

    As of 2015 the Ministry has been in discussion with the Chamber of Commerce and local stakeholders about necessary and desired changes in the legislation. The draft legislation has undergone another consultation round and after that every citizen has been able to provide input through the internet consultation.

    Due to prioritization of other topics, the introduction of this legislation has been delayed.

  • How is the Chamber going to use the additional income?

    We expect to be able to perform our legal duties, however we will need to see the actual results of the new situation.

    It is the wish of the Ministry and the Chamber for the Chamber to be able to function fully, especially with respect to providing information and support of entrepreneurs without subsidies from the Public Entity of Bonaire.

    We do not expect a significant increase in income and it is not our intention to spend significantly more, as we do not see any cause for this.

  • Why is there a difference with the other (Dutch) Caribbean islands?

    As the BES islands on one hand, and Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten on the other all have their own legislation it is not possible to make a statement about the differences in legislation and their impact on the fees.

    It is however evident that the islands differ greatly with respect to their scale, which could be a (partial) explanation.

  • Why is the financing of the Chamber of Commerce in Bonaire arranged differently from in the Netherlands?

    History and legislation differ: for example in the BES islands the Chambers have an elected board, which is not the case in the Netherlands.

    To compensate for some fiscal measures, the annual fee was abolished in teh Netherlands some years ago. This is not the case on the BES islands. A new entry in the Commercial Register in the Netherlands is also subject to a registration fee.

  • How has this been communicated to the registered entries?

    Starting December 2021 the Chamber of Commerce communicates about the upcoming new legislation via email, press releases, her own website and social media.