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Jun 29, 2016

PM Barrow Blames P.U.P. for Majority of Award

In case you missed it, Government, for the acquisition of B.T.L., must pay approximately four hundred million to the previous owners of B.T.L., give or take a million or two. That means that by the eighth of July, a two hundred million payment will be due. Within a year, another payment of two hundred million will be due. Of course, by that time the two hundred million will have attracted interest of an additional twenty-four million. Moving on from the bare bones of the arbitration award, Prime Minister Dean Barrow wasted no time at all getting into a bit of the politics, explaining that the much vilified Accommodation Agreement constitutes the larger part of the award so therefore the blame for a majority of the award must lie on the shoulders of the People’s United Party.

 

Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“The award is split into two. That is, an amount for the actual value of the shares that we nationalized; and an amount for the Accommodation Agreement gifted to the former owners by the then P.U.P. Government. And I wish to make clear at the outset that I place blame for that Accommodation Agreement portion of the Award, which is sixty percent of the total, squarely on the People’s United Party. In the agreement I concluded with the former owners, and took to Parliament, the Accommodation Agreement portion of the Award is not to go to those former shareholders. Instead, that money-less expenses-is to be paid by us in Belize dollars, and is to remain and be spent in Belize. The money, as is said in the contract from which I quote, “shall be applied in accordance with such requests for grants as the Government may reasonably make to fund projects to help the people of Belize.” These projects will clearly supplement in a big way Government’s Budgeted Cap Two and Cap Three expenditure, and should greatly offset any slowdown to be otherwise expected from the reduction in Petrocaribe flows.”

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