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Nov 11, 2016

Tourism Minister Says Prime Minister Will Get “Best Deal” for Belize

Manuel Heredia Jr.

Belize awaits the return of Prime Minister Dean Barrow on Saturday from New York City, where he urged bondholders tied to the 2038 Bond or “Superbond Three point O” to come together to listen to Belize’s pitch for a further restructuring of the multi-billion dollar debt package. The Barrow administration conceded in a press release earlier this week announcing the visit that for a variety of reasons, Belize’s economy has significantly underperformed in comparison with the projections used at the time in setting the terms of the 2038 Bonds. It cites serious economic and financial challenges, including low growth, rising fiscal deficits, a deteriorating balance of payments position, and declining sovereign debt indicators. But will the bondholders listen? Cabinet anticipates the Prime Minister’s report, but today Tourism Minister Manuel Heredia Junior maintained an upbeat tone and confidence in the national leader.

 

Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation

“All I can tell you [is] that the Prime Minister is abroad, trying to negotiate for the best interest of Belize; the details of that will be revealed, probably Tuesday. But I am sure that every time the Prime Minister tries to accomplish something, he succeeds. And this time I believe that whatever the details will be Tuesday, it will be good news for Belize, good news for everyone.”

 

Reporter

“Sir, is this Superbond restructuring possibly an indication of hard times, and can you say if the Cabinet is considering an increase in taxes for the next fiscal year?”

 

Manuel Heredia Jr.

“Well, we haven’t spoken about the new fiscal year; I know that everywhere in the world today, there is hardship. But with good leaders – and in particular I believe my Prime Minister is one of the best leaders and Prime Ministers the country has ever had – and I am sure that the more he can get for Belize and the less strains that people can have, I believe that that is what he wants to accomplish.”

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