Guide to Doing Business
The most relevant regulated industries of Suriname are:
As of 2012 Suriname´s financial sector comprised of nine commercial banks (including subsidiaries), investment and finance companies, savings and credit unions, the National Development Bank, insurance companies, pension funds, funds, the stock exchange, foreign exchange bureaus, and money transfer houses. The Central Bank of Suriname (‘the Central Bank’) supervises these financial institutions. The Central Bank is also Suriname´s monetary authority and the country’s governing body in economic affairs. The Bank Act 1956 (revised in 2010) charges the Central Bank of Suriname with promoting the value and stability of the currency of Suriname.
Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting Terrorist Finance laws and regulations are in place since 2002 and lastly amended in 2016. Compliance with the Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting Terrorist Finance laws and regulations is supervised by the Central Bank of Suriname and the Financial Investigation Unit.
Suriname is yet to enter into an Intergovernmental Agreement with the United States of America with regards to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).
Suriname has an extensive educational system with free schooling compulsory until age 12. There are two types of schools: the regular normal education and private schools, this form can be found in both primary and secondary education. With some exception on the private (American) schools, the teaching language is Dutch. The main university in the country is the Anton de Kom University of Suriname which has faculties of medicine, law, natural resources, and social and technical sciences. Education in Suriname is based on Dutch learning methods, there are also many Dutch teachers working in Suriname.
Suriname has been working on developing the energy sector. Energy is generated by EBS (The N.V. Energiebedrijven Suriname), Suriname Aluminium Company, L.L.C. (Suralco), the Ministery of Natural Resources (remote areas) and Staatsolie Power Company Suriname (SPCS). The majority of Suriname’s electricity is produced in the hydro-electric power plant, Afobaka. As a result, the country has a very low reliance on fossil fuels for the generation of electricity. The Afobaka hydropower plant, is operated by Staatsolie as of 1 January 2020 and functions as the backbone of the country’s electricity system. Staastolie is currently studying the feasibility of bringing more water to the dam in the coming months.
There are four big hospitals in Suriname the S’Lands Hospital, the St. Vicentius Ziekenhuis, the Diakonessenhuis Hospital and the Academish Ziekenhuis. The Psychiatric Center Suriname provides mental health care. The Ministry of Public Health is responsible for the central coordination of a national health care system in Suriname. Health policy in Suriname is implemented on the premise that health services should be available, accessible and acceptable to the population, with emphasis on the development of Primary Health Care.
About 45 kilometers south of Paramaribo, at ‘Zanderij’, you will find the Suriname international airport, the Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport. Besides the international airport there are a number of smaller airports all around more rural part of the country. The government-owned Suriname Airways offers regularly scheduled services to the Netherlands, Curaçao. Aruba/Miami, Trinidad & Tobago, Cayenne, Belem, Georgetown and Orlando. State-owned and private companies operate regular bus services, both local and long distance. Public transportation and licenced private busses are also referred to as ‘wild busses’. They ride set routes and can transport 16 to 22 passengers at a time.
Telecommunication in Suriname consists of radio, television, fixed and mobile telephones and the Internet. Suriname shares with Guyana an investment in a glass fiber sea cable connection. Daily newspapers are privately-owned. State-run broadcasters operate alongside private radio and TV stations. The Telecommunications Company Suriname (Telesur) is a state owned telecom company and has exclusive rights of fixed-line and broadband services. The mobile telecom market has grown significantly in recent years and is much greater than the landline market. The three main players are: Telesur, Digicel, and Uniqa. Suriname performance in mobile telecommunications excels, being ranked 7th in the world.
In 2004, the Parliament of Suriname enacted the Telecommunications Act (S.B. 2004 No. 151). Pursuant Chapter II of the Telecommunication Act established the Telecommunications Authority Suriname (TAS) was established.