The Daily Herald reports that, as of November 1, Nichalin Martina has become the new director of the Tax Department Caribbean Netherlands, which is part of the Tax and Customs Administration of the European Netherlands. Martina succeeds Angel Bermudez, who left the department in June.
This is not Martina’s first adventure abroad. The tax specialist, who was trained in the Netherlands, started her career in Aruba where she worked as a tax inspector. After that she started her career with the Tax and Customs Administration of the European Netherlands.
Martina held various positions there; from tax inspector for payroll taxes to national project manager and from strategic manager to operational manager for small and medium-sized enterprises. The step towards the position of a director was a logical one for Martina. “The common theme throughout my career has been that I like to be in the driving seat. When this job vacancy crossed my path, I therefore immediately thought: ‘This is my job.’”
The Caribbean is familiar ground for her. “My father is from Curaçao; my mother is from the Netherlands. Although I was not born there, the Caribbean Netherlands feels like my home. I consider it to be self-evident that I use my talents for the islands.” Martina is responsible for both the Tax Department and Customs, which together form Tax Department CN. Apart from the regular tax- and customs processes, the department also performs duties for third parties, such as collection and levy for other implementing organisations and for the public entities Bonaire, Statia and Saba.
“We are on the road to further improvement of our process and in giving content to the cooperation with other government parties.” How can we provide better services to citizens and companies and what more is possible in the field of cooperation are questions to be answered by Martina and her organisation.
Each transition involves unrest and worries, Martina stated, and the same applies to the reforms of 2010. “As Tax Department we are here to execute the law. We cannot change anything about that law. What we can do, is to make the services we provide to people as pleasant as possible. For instance, by making concerted efforts to minimize mistakes, answering the questions of people as quickly as possible and if possible assisting them in completing their tax returns.”
Research performed by Government Service Caribbean Netherlands in 2013 showed that 65 per cent of inhabitants were satisfied with services provided. “This percentage confirms that we are on the right track,” according to Martina.