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Jan 10, 2011

Mike Singh’s company did paperwork for 2 of the international catamarans

While P.M. Barrow was not sure whether the former CEO knew of the change in policy well in advance, EuroCaribe Shipping Services, the agent for Carnival in Belize, has come forward to say that they only just found out of the changes. Today News Five spoke off camera with the Director of Maritime Estates Ltd. who claimed that Mike Singh, in fact, knew of Carnival’s latest requirements because his company BTALCO did the paperwork for two catamarans to be brought to Belize for use as tenders.  In light of the meeting held with tender owners this morning, there are still major concerns whether the consolidation of services will prove effective or beneficial for small companies.

Voice of: Director of Maritime Estates Ltd.

“One point that we would like to clarify is that EuroCaribe as the agents did not have any prior knowledge about this proposed change from Carnival up to the point that Mr. Prime Minister Barrow stated it.  In fact, these proposed changes only became known to us, to our offices between the week of December twenty-third and it was strictly rumors and nothing was confirmed, nothing was official. Carnival Cruise Lines contacted and arranged for a meeting with our owners in Miami and a meeting was held on January third between ourselves and our principals and up until then Carnival gave us official news or notice that yes they had been in touch with a new entity that was, that had proposed to do the tendering at a lower cost for them which obviously attracted their attention and were interested in and that they were going to pursue this issue and they did mention a gentleman by the name of Mr. Tino Castillo would be in charge of the local operations and they also notified us about two Norwegian Cruise Lines catamarans that had come in the week before to the Big Creek Port and that those two catamarans, double-deckers together with four that are already here, owned by Royal Caribbean would be in charge of all of the tendering for Carnival Cruise Lines.”

Isani Cayetano

“The Prime Minister of Belize at the beginning of his press conference this morning mentioned that the existing tender owners have agreed on consolidating their services to form a singular entity that would be the primary contract holder for tendering exclusively in Belize which, when translated would mean that EuroCaribe which is the main agent here in Belize would be on the same level now or the same playing field with the subcontractors that you guys do business with.  Can you speak to us on your position as a company on that particular aspect of this entire situation?”

Voice of: Director of Maritime Estates Ltd.

“I believe that there’s some level of uncertainty still.  There’s definitely no guarantees and still a huge amount of risk.  As local operators we may still be naïve, thinking that it can work but given everything is in place and readily available how quickly can this new change or this new requirement be implemented?  How much time will Carnival Cruise Lines give the local operators and say you have up until next week Thursday or a month from now, if you don’t have these new catamarans in place then what can they do?  Stop calling Belize or pull completely or reduce our calls?  Obviously that’s something that nobody that has vested interest in the tourism industry or in the cruise tourism industry at this point wants.  Definitely not the local operators who have mortgages and commitments with the banks already so yes we do need the cruise ships, we do need tendering to continue but what I am saying is that these new changes that Carnival wants won’t take place overnight.”

The delegation of four which was headed by P.M. Barrow was not able to meet with Norwegian Cruise Line executives while in Miami over the weekend.  Barrow however, did mention that he was scheduled to meet with them this evening as they are in town for the meeting of the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association.

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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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6 Responses for “Mike Singh’s company did paperwork for 2 of the international catamarans”

  1. rootsman says:

    Worst case scenario Carnival gives contract to new company local tenders loses out entirely, I hardly believe that Carnival will pull out just because these new guys did not get the contract and because they will have to continue using the smaller tenders for a while longer so let’s not get panicky, if they leave you all would have lose out either way if they had stayed and give the contract to the other guys, they will just have to sit tight and wait for the locals to get this thing together, in the mean time it’s business as usual. The PM do have the power to stall this thing until the locals get it all together even if it takes some months to do so. On this Mike Singh issue it seems like where ever Mr. Singh travels there is a trail of dishonesty and deceit around him maybe it’s time that an investigation be conducted into his undertakings.

  2. cg says:

    i swear this UDP people only dumb..nobody every know anything until Channel 5 bring it to light….geez

  3. daveyt says:

    Not dumb, cg – Devious! They are all about as transparent as a brick wall! I agree with rootsman – investigations are well overdue, but unfortunately will never happen….. Too many snouts will get pulled out of the public money trough…..

  4. daveyt says:

    mmmm CONFLICT OF INTERESTS???? BTALCO, Mike Singh. CEO Tourism, then transferred to BELTRAIDE, just in time for his company to import the two catamarans???? Of course, it’ll be brushed under the carpet, to the cost of hundreds of Belizeans jobs. But whenever has the people of Belize ever been in the thoughts of the ‘First Belizeans” anyway?

  5. Rizzo says:

    Again, someone is spearheading this process. This equipment just didn’t miraculously showed up. There had to be some sort of coordination for these items to be shipped. These companies are capitalizing of the country and some folks, UDP, are getting a huge cut. If I was channel 5 I would dig up the shipping documents and find out who signed off on the declaration form and approved these items to shipped to Belize oh, and check if taxes were payed.

  6. Earl Grey says:

    ARE WE SURPRISED???????????????????????????????????????????

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