THE HAGUE – A large number of the written questions that was sent to the Minister of Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk from the Dutch MP Ronald Plasterk were about the local telecommunication company UTS and KPMG.
The Dutch TV program EenVandaag contacted KPMG Netherlands for a reaction, but was referred to KPMG Dutch Caribbean in Curaçao, which has issued a statement discarding Van Raak’s questions and the suggested ties between KPMG and the underworld on the former Netherlands Antilles.
KPMG already responded to Van Raak’s first set of questions in March 2016 and reiterated that it was not common practice to publicly respond to questions about a client. “However, due to the nature of some questions, we again feel compelled to issue a public statement, bearing in mind that KPMG Dutch Caribbean at all times handles in accordance with the rules of the accountancy world.”
KPMG Dutch Caribbean explained, with the permission of its client UTS, that the information that the annual accounts of UTS were kept secret was incorrect. UTS has an audit committee which supervises the board regarding financial accountability. The Board of Directors has approved the annual accounts and forwarded these to the General Meeting of Shareholders for their approval.
According to KMPG, there is no obligation for companies in Curaçao, contrary to the Netherlands, to deposit their annual account at the trade register of the Chamber of Commerce. A large company such as UTS does have to make its annual account available at its office for interested parties, which frequently happens.
KPMG further noted that the independent Foundation Government Accountants Bureau SOAB received the approved annual accounts of UTS for evaluation and for reporting purposes to the Curaçao Finance Minister. The annual accounts have been approved up to 2015.
International guidelines and standards don’t allow any financial interest in an audit client and KPMG sticks to those rules. “KPMG has no financial interest whatsoever in UTS.” The accountancy firm did state that it had carried out various advisory jobs for UTS as an “important client.”