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Jun 1, 2016

Fin Sec Speaks on Arbitration Award

Earlier in our newscast Financial Secretary Joseph Waight explained that to deal with a deteriorating fiscal position GOB will have to tighten its belt and control expenditures. But there’s one looming expenditure over which they have no control. That’s the arbitration award for the nationalization of B.T.L.  What we know so far is the assessment of share value which put’s government liability at the onset at about two hundred and fifty million. That’s without interest and legal fees to be determined by the arbitration panel. Waight told News Five that whatever the panel decides is just what they’ll have to pay.

 

Joseph Waight, Financial Secretary

“There’s nothing new since we heard from the Arbitration panel where they gave a value of the shares. We’re still awaiting to hear the full decision which would also include perhaps accumulated interest and legal charges. We don’t expect it to be anywhere near as much as the value of the shares. Once we have the total thing then under the settlement agreement se did with the former owners we pay half now and half later – half in twelve months’ time. We’ll finance that perhaps by doing some domestic borrowing.”

 

Reporter

“But as it stands right now how much would be half to be paid immediately?”

 

Joseph Waight

Joseph Waight

“Let’s see…I think we’d have to pay about ninety million dollars, some in US and some in Belize dollars – less than half in US dollars.”

 

Reporter

“But that’s just the value of the shares. You mentioned interest just now. We have heard people express that with the interest and the costs we could be looking at almost half a billion dollars. Are those the figures that you all are…?”

 

Joseph Waight

“That’s not my figures. It all depends on what kind of interest rate they choose, if they choose domestic…it’s speculative at this point. Domestic rates are higher than international rates. Since the payments are going out in US dollars, we believe it’ll be closer to a US dollar rate which will be very small.”

 

Reporter

“Is Belize at the mercy of this arbitration panel, that whatever they decide in terms of anything – interest, costs, how it is paid, how the interest has been accrued, since when it has been accrued – you all have no input on that?”

 

Joseph Waight

“Part of the settlement was that we would abide by the findings of the arbitration panel. There’s no further appeal.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Fin Sec Speaks on Arbitration Award”

  1. Hatari says:

    And GOB screws us again! We have inept fools running our country. They foul up every thing they touch and waste what little money we have. Now we will be saddled once again with their “deals” gone wrong and the millions of dollars that we will have to pay. No wonder we can’t ever get ahead or even break even. People, wake up! Stop putting these corrupt bureaucrats back in office.

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