The Bank’s most important objectives are to maintain the external stability of the Netherlands Antillean guilder (NAf.) and to promote the efficient functioning of the financial system in the Countries Curaçao and St. Maarten. To realize these objectives, the Bank, as supervisory authority, has frequently recurred to credit control measures and/or to changing the discount rate. The functions of the Bank, explicitly summed up in the Bank Charter, are:
First, the Bank is the only institution entitled by law to issue paper money in the Countries Curaçao and St. Maarten. The Bank also is charged with the circulation of coins.
Second, the Bank supervises banking and credit institutions to guarantee depositors and other creditors funds at banking and credit institutions in particular and the soundness of the financial sector in general.
Third, the Bank manages the foreign exchange reserves of the Netherlands Antilles, which includes regulating of the transfer of payments between residents and nonresidents of the Countries Curaçao and St. Maarten.
Finally, the Bank acts as the government’s treasurer by receiving and making payments from and to the public through the tax collector’s accounts at the Central Bank.
To strengthen the Central Bank’s independent position vis-à-vis the government, the Bank Charter limits the monetary financing of budget deficits to 10% of the central government’s revenues in the previous year. This limitation must be seen in the context of an overdraft facility to meet liquidity deficits of the public sector that result from seasonal variations in government revenues.
Two of the Bank’s basic tasks are to control the amount of liquid assets in circulation (monetary supervision), and to act as the supervisory body for credit and banking institutions operating in the Countries Curaçao and St. Maarten (prudential supervision). Furthermore, the Bank is one of the government’s main advisors on financial and economic affairs.