With a population of 110,000 Aruba is an island in the Caribbean sea. Aruba’s only economic pillar is tourism, which makes the island extremely vulnerable. Aruba shares the same issues with many other sister islands: lack of expertise and knowledge, small population, small island with limited natural resources. However, the island is very rich in service, hospitality and creativity. There is only so much an island can do alone. It needs partnerships with other islands to strengthen, to learn, to share and to benefit.
Aruba joined Global Island Partnership as its main mission matches Aruba’s plan for sustainability. Aruba is incorporating the SDGs into its policy plans in order to develop a sustainable economy and a sustainable lifestyle for its population. Aruba is also finding ways in which it can protect and conserve its marine life. In order to accomplish these goals, Aruba is in need of support, knowledge and expertise. The GLISPA membership will provide Aruba with a network of support, collaboration and a source of commitment in achieving its goals. Being a member of GLISPA allows Aruba to collaborate with other islands facing similar issues and to find strategies and solutions together.
Aruba has reached the point when it is no longer sustainable to keep on building large hotels and destroying its nature and natural resources. It urgently needs to revamp itself and diversify its economy. Aruba is looking into partnerships to work on a new blue economy plan. This plan includes a bio marine park, a new waste management company, a reduction of carbon emissions with 50% by 2020 and the protection of its corals and reefs. Aruba is also looking into new technology projects, modernizing its educational system, including STEM in its curriculum and seeking opportunities in health tourism and education tourism. Aruba’s goal is to seek opportunities, to learn what other islands are doing in these areas and to use the best practices to the island’s advantage.
Aruba’s membership representative is The Hon. Joselin S. Croes, Minister Plenipotentiary for Aruba