News & Media

Princess Juliana International Airport Celebrates Successful Debt Refinancing Transaction

(L to R )– PJIAE N.V. CFO, Ben van der Klift, PJIAE N.V. CEO, Brian Mingo, Hon. Minister of VROMI, Egbert Jurendy Doran, Hon. Prime Minister, Silveria Jacobs, Hon. Minister of Finance, Ardwell Irion, Hon. Minister of VSA, Omar Ottley, RBC Bank N.V., Cheryl Pantophlet and AIB Bank N.V. CEO, Frendsel Giel.

Mimosa Sky lounge, St. Maarten (May 25, 2022) - Today, Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIAE) celebrated the completion of the successful refinancing of its 2012 loan, with a new and more favorable loan in the amount of USD 90 million. It is an important milestone for the airport and in line with PJIAE’s strategy to rebuild the airport for the future of St. Maarten.

A celebratory reception was held at the Mimosa Sky lounge on Rhine Road, whereby many stakeholders of the airport were in attendance.

Ben van der Klift, Chief Financial Officer of PJIAE N.V.: ‘This is an important step forward and another vote of confidence in PJIAE N.V. and it also underscores our transformation into an airport with strong ambitions for the future. With the announcement of this new loan facility combined with a recovering market performance through Q1 of 2022, we see progress. PJIAE has positioned itself positively in the market, while enhancing its financial abilities. This will allow us to execute our current rebuilding project and build on new facilities such as a new fuel farm, catering service and much more, in the near future.

We must remember we are not out of the woods yet. Hurricane Irma and COVID-19 has had a deep impact on the performance and results of our airport in the last five years and we are still on the road of recovery in the coming years’.

Silveria Jacobs, Honorable Prime Minister of St Maarten: ‘I’m happy to see all the developments at the airport. PJIAE plays an important role in the development of St. Maarten and our economy. By building, extending and improving the facilities on the airport we will be able to welcome more passengers in the years to come’.

With large loans it is common to use multiple banks, financial institutions, or lenders, these are brought together by an arranger who organizes the loan package. PJIAE N.V. was able to find such a loan package within the former Netherlands Antilles and is extremely excited to report that most of the funds (46%) came from St. Maarten institutions, 44% from Curacao based institutions and 10% from Aruba based institutions. An official signing was done on April 4, 2022, whereby AIB Bank N.V. was the arranger of the loan and the RBC Trust (Trinidad and Tobago) Limited, served as the Facility and Security Agent.

The refinancing of the loan facility would not have been accomplished without the honorable Prime Minister, Ms. Silveria Jacobs, Minister of Finance, Mr. Ardwell Irion and the Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication (TEATT), Mr. Roger Lawrence of the Government of St. Maarten. The Management Board of PJIAE N.V. extends gratitude for their relentless support during the entire refinancing process.

About Princess Juliana International Airport

Princess Juliana International Airport is the second busiest airport in the Northeast Caribbean. It is an important airport hub for Saba, St Eustatius, St Barthelemy, Anguilla, Dominica, Nevis and Tortola. The airport is one of the largest employers on the island. It has 277 workers and an additional 1700 workers within the entire airport community. In 2022, the Sint Maarten airport expects to handle 1.2 million passengers and 54.000 aircraft movements. The reconstruction works of the airport have started in September 2021. By the end of 2022, the departure hall will be ready to use for passengers. In the summer of 2023, the new terminal will be finished. Contractor Ballast Nedam International Projects is actively seeking cooperation with local people and companies which is essential for socio-economic recovery of Sint Maarten.

Historic Timeline

Princess Juliana Airport was officially opened by Princess Juliana in 1944. In 2006, her Majesty Queen Beatrix inaugurated the new terminal building. In 2017, St. Maarten was hit by Hurricane Irma (Cat 5) and the airport’s terminal was heavily damaged. In January 2020, Princess Juliana International Airport signed the World Bank/EIB loan to reconstruct the terminal. In July 2021, Ballast Nedam International Project (BNIP) was the main contractor selected for the reconstruction of the airport terminal.