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Sep 28, 2015

What’s the Confusion Over Remaining BTL Compensation?

The Opposition has lashed out at one particular aspect of G.O.B.’s settlement with the Ashcroft Group – what they call a blank check issued by government. The reference is to the uncertainty over the final figure which will be paid as compensation for B.T.L. That final price is to be determined by an international tribunal at some point this year. P.M. Barrow told News Five he doesn’t understand the confusion over the matter.

 

Dean Barrow, Prime Minister

“What’s left for the tribunal to determine the quantum of the compensation. When we took the company when we nationalized with the public interest, we always knew that we would have to pay compensation. The very nationalization legislation provides for the payments of compensation. All that is happening is that instead of the termination as to the quantum of compensation going through the court system brings forth Court of Appeal, CCJ. It will be determined by an arbitration panel, an arbitration panel that was given jurisdiction by the Belize UKL bilateral treaty and which the CCJ told us we cannot stop from in fact assuming that roll and becoming the first determinant of compensation. So what is the uncertainty if it didn’t go to arbitration, it would have gone to the courts and there would still be uncertainty. You don’t know how much the compensation will be until a tribunal, either a court or an arbitration panel makes that determination, I don’t understand how people could be talking, especially the opposition leader about a blank check. The law you go back and check the last act that we did in terms of nationalization. Because of what the court of appeal had said in our first bit of registration. We provide for compensation to be paid and to be paid quickly. Because constitutionally that is the desert the entitlement of those from whom we took the company. So nothing has changed, there is nothing new, there is nothing untoward of sinister about saying when the compensation is determined we will pay it.”

 

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