Guest blog: Bert Vermaas welcomes Dutch delegation at “Europe meets the Americas” conference
VCC International’s director Bert Vermaas welcomes Dutch delegation at “Europe meets the Americas” conference.
On May 6th- 8th the “Europe Meets the Americas” business conference was held at the Westin Aruba Resort. More than 700 participants from over 200 companies from Aruba, Belgium, Bonaire, Brazil, Colombia, Curaçao, The Netherlands, Panama, Spain, United States and Venezuela were present during this conference.
Bert Vermaas, director of VCC International was asked to welcome the Dutch delegation on Sunday May 5th. Sitting next to Simon Smith, the Director-General of Foreign Economic Relations, Bert told the gathered members of this delegation in his modest and straight forward way why they should choose Aruba as the home-base for their activities in North, Central and South America as well as the Caribbean Area. Taking for granted that Aruba is part of the Kingdom of The Netherlands, with its stable political, financial and legal structure the country also has a well developed technical infrastructure, the best airport in the region and is located at the front door to the Middle and South Americas. The main reason, however why companies should open an office on our beautiful island, is the Aruban culture and its inhabitants. Traveling from The Bahamas, Texas, Panama, Colombia, to Surinam and all the Dutch Caribbean Islands, Bert has observed great differences between these countries. Most of the people in Aruba are well educated, they speak two or more languages and know where customer service stands for after being active in the hospitality and tourist industry for more then 50 years. The mixture of different cultures and races make the Arubans adapt to changing conditions as easily as chameleons. In the morning they are the perfect partner to help you doing business with South Americans, in the afternoon they help you close a deal with your hard bargaining European headquarters and in the evening they are your best companion to visit a beach party. Arubans will help you to make your business successful, not because the profitability of each deal is guaranteed but because they will help you to make the right match with your future business partner.
If you combine this attitude with a low crime rate, a relatively high standard of living and the advantages of the Aruban Free Zone, it is obvious that Aruba is the perfect place in the Caribbean to establish your regional “hub’’ for starting your business with the Americas. This means setting up an office and exploring the opportunities for your company in the surrounding countries with the help of your Aruban employees and local advisors.
Bert’s speech was highly appreciated by the members of the Dutch delegation and while they were enjoying the Aruban hospitality with drinks and snacks many participants made use of the opportunity to discuss the advantages of a local office with him and representatives of the Aruban Chamber of Commerce and Free Zone Aruba.