Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Crime, People & Places, Regional / International » Did Joel Nagel’s “Global Access Conference” get him in trouble?
Apr 21, 2017

Did Joel Nagel’s “Global Access Conference” get him in trouble?

Joel Nagel

Ambassador of Belize Joel Nagel remains accredited to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland and the International Atomic Energy Agency.  The U.S. attorney was also accredited to Austria and several other European countries, but was dismissed by the Government of Austria for improper promotion of his private business. Nagel is a practitioner of law in international tax and estate planning, joint ventures and international finance. He is also co-founder and director of E.C.I. Development Limited, the holding company for Grand Baymen Resort on Ambergris Caye. The website for E.C.I. features a letter from Nagel addressed to participants in what he called a “Global Access and Continuity Conference” held in September of 2016 in Vienna, Austria. The conference, Nagel explained, seeks to help Americans invest in global markets, while navigating the difficult challenges involved in working with the Government – of the U.S., not Belize. Nagel boasted of opportunities to meet with experts, advisors and professionals from across the world in a private, closed-door session for thousands of dollars. He worked along with Vienna native and president of Caye International Bank, of which he was a former official, Peter Zipper. On Belize’s Independence Day, Nagel was hosting a Danube Valley River Cruise seeing historic and beautiful Austrian castles, an event totally unrelated to Belize. And the cost ranged in the thousands of dollars for limited participation, not including airfare, transfers to/from the hotel‎, alcoholic beverages or hotel accommodations. It is not clear if this is the conference that raised the Austrians’ ire, but Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington told us as much when we spoke with him two weeks ago.


File: April 7, 2017: Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs

Wilfred Elrington

“He had been called in by a lower-level functionary of the Foreign Ministry in Austria and asked to leave, because he was currently participating in a seminar in Austria which had been organized by a company he had some interest in, and they thought that that was inconsistent with his responsibility. We never thought that that was coming from the officials; we had thought that it was only an intervention by a lower-level functionary. We subsequently discovered that – this is information we are getting which is informal, really – that the person who he had replaced in Austria, a man named Pilefsky, who was there for years and was appointed under the People’s United Party government, had a wife who was working in Foreign Affairs, and they were in fact the Foreign Affairs information which was prejudicial to him, and it was based on that that he was asked to leave. He told me subsequently that he had a frank sit-down with them and he asked them, ‘Did I do anything wrong? Was I corrupt?’ and they said, no, it was nothing of that nature; but you were involved in private business promotion in Austria, and we don’t want to have that done, and that’s why he was asked to leave. But as far as I am aware, that does not affect his other postings, his other accreditations, as far as I am aware. I knew him personally here in Belize and I was the one who recommended him to the Prime Minister, because I was very impressed with the way he was promoting business in Belize, he had waves and waves of people coming in every year, several times of the year, encouraging them to invest in Belize.”


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.

Advertise Here

You must be logged in to post a comment Login