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HomeEconomyIEDOM renews its ties with St. Martin

IEDOM renews its ties with St. Martin

MARIGOT: Invited to the CCISM premises in the presence of professionals and the local press, two representatives of the Institut d’émission des départements d’outre-mer (IEDOM) presented the annual economic report on Saint Martin. 

The podium was occupied by Thierry Beltrand, Director of IEDOM Guadeloupe, Saint Martin and Saint Barthelemy, and Kévin Durand, Head of Studies & Credit Institutions. The first, director for 32 years, began this presentation of the figures on the economy of the Northern Islands by expressing his joy at having reconnected with the officials of Saint Martin with the desire to be more present, aware that there is still room for improvement in the collection of data and analysis given the cruel lack of information of this type on the territory.

Since the creation of an advisory committee 5 years ago, the IEDOM aims to isolate more data specific to Saint Martin, by setting up the business climate index (ICA) to collect cyclical information that will give a more accurate measure of GDP. The IEDOM Welcome and Information Office (BAI) in Saint Martin has been closed for the past two years, and Thierry Beltrand is ensuring that it will be reopened by next month, with a monthly presence of an agent to, for example, inform and guide people in a situation of over-indebtedness. As for the figures for the year 2020, the health crisis will have had an impact on all sectors. Tourism, first of all, is a sector already weakened since the passage of Irma, where the IEDOM notes a drop in visitation of the island of 70%. Note the preference of tourists for Airbnb-type accommodation instead of hotels, thus minimizing interactions and the risk of contamination.

Closely linked to the economic development of the island, the construction sector has seen a 24% reduction in the number of employees and a 13.7% reduction in cement consumption. The unemployment rate remains high (one-third of the population) and the migratory balance is negative. However, banking activity is holding up well, supported by state-guaranteed loans (PGE), with an increase of 15.7% for businesses.

The outlook for 2021 is cautious but optimistic, even though the recovery should also depend in the short to medium term on the population’s vaccination coverage, which remains low at this stage, as in Guadeloupe and Martinique. In this context, IEDOM, which acts as a central bank under the authority of the Banque de France, is making sure that its contribution is neutral, free, and accessible in various ways, such as by offering local missions in partnership with the French National Education System and the Rectorat de l’Académie de Guadeloupe: a basic training course on simple issues such as opening a bank account will be set up as early as March 2022 for the 3rd and 4th SEGPA classes at the Monts des Accords middle school and at the Roche Gravée middle school in Quartier d’Orléans The detailed report of the IEDOM will be available online next week.

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