WILLEMSTAD – Damen Shipyard has failed in all aspects of compliance during its management in Curaçao.
The company, in 2023, is not providing the expected contribution to the island’s economy while some of its World War II-era docks remain unused. Damen has not been able to make the operation profitable. This is how Damen Shiprepair Curaçao (DSCu) explained it to Parliament.
The floating docks that Curaçao received did not lead to a structural increase in profits due to technical and operational problems. The two years of COVID had a very negative impact on sales development at Damen. As there were no profits generated by Damen Shiprepair Curaçao, it was not possible to fill the investment fund, and for this reason, the technical condition of the shipyard has deteriorated. To determine whether the shipyard in Curaçao has a right to exist, the Dutch government has contracted KPMG to develop a new business plan and adjust it together with Damen, CDM Holding, and the Curaçao government.
“A significant challenge to ensure the success of this business plan was the need to find investment space to renew the deteriorating technical condition of the dock. In previous years, DSCu was responsible for the daily maintenance of the dock. As the operator of the dock, Damen is not responsible for structural investments in the shipyard. However, it is questionable how the company allowed two older floating docks to be left without installation. One of them is still underwater and cannot be removed.
KPMG’s new business plan has come from the perspective that, for now, the shipyard only has two operational covered docks. However, the report also suggests that the shipyard can only have a right to exist if it works on additional determining factors to guarantee profits. These include a partial reduction in the workforce, flexibility in labor for both permanent and temporary employees, and improvements in the dock’s infrastructure. But in the end, Damen came to create a shortage of jobs and lay off employees.”
Bron: Curacao Chronicle