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Dec 21, 2012

Government negotiates $150 Million relief with bondholders

Dean Barrow

After offers and counter offers have been turned down by both sides, the five hundred and fifty million dollars Super Bond was almost at its own fiscal cliff. But today the prime minister called a late press conference to announce that a deal had just been agreed to with the bondholders, represented by A.J. Mediratta of Greylock Capital Management.  Members of the bond negotiating team including Glen Ysaguirre the Governor of the Central Bank of Belize, and Ambassador Mark Espat, the team leader of sat at the head table at the Best Western Biltmore where the Prime Minister announced that one hundred and fifty million dollars in relief would be realized under the new terms.


Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Belize has reached agreement in principle with its bondholders over the restructuring of the superbond. Now, this agreement is comprehensive; it is sustainable and it will provide well in excess of a hundred and fifty million dollars in relief to Belize. The agreement was struck this afternoon after, of course, after a long and arduous process ably led by Ambassador Mark Espat. And after things took a particular turn that saw me getting personally in the mix; and saw me personally getting into conversations with Mister A.J Mediratta, who represents Greylock, one of the two co-chairs on the creditor committee. It is important to signal that the direct conversations began as a consequence of the intersession of a big man indeed, the Speaker of the House of Representatives. And I didn’t mean it physically, I meant it metaphorically—he is a giant of a fellow. After Mike Peyrefitte facilitated a dialogue, an interaction between myself and Mr. Mediratta.  We thought we were very close indeed. I came back yesterday. We agreed that we would talk again yesterday afternoon which we did and at the close of that conversation, we agreed that we had a deal subject of course to his going to the other members of his coordinating committee. He did that today and after some agonizing moments when it was necessary for him to coral each and every core member of the creditor committee, he was able to call me and to say that in fact the creditor committee had signed off on our deal. Now ladies and gentlemen, I’ve said that this deal is an in principle one and the reason for characterizing it in that fashion is simply because a term sheet must now be prepared reflecting what Mr. Mediratta and I and what Belize and the bondholder creditor committee have agreed.  Until that term sheet is prepared and the lawyers are going to begin to work on that almost immediately—of course I imagine the Christmas holidays will intervene—but until that term sheet is prepared and signed off on, I am not at liberty to tell you all the details of what we have agreed.  There will be a launch of the new offer with the new terms on or around the fifteenth of January. I believe Mark we are aiming for the fifteenth so we can actually close the deal in terms of having the creditors out there take up the new offer in time for us to start the servicing of the new instrument just at a point where the coupon payment under the old instrument would have been due. Joe I believe it is the middle of February; is that correct? So ladies and gentlemen, please as soon as the term sheet is ready, the precise details will be released to you. The debt team will meet again with the social partners to discuss all those details that will in fact be revealed at that point.”

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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9 Responses for “Government negotiates $150 Million relief with bondholders”

  1. Unclejohn says:

    Set of crooks, I’m am not at liberty to discuss the detail… That is because the details , are that you low lives thieves have again swindle millions from we poor Belizeans… all you low lives crooks should suffer a sudden stoke and punish until you all slowly and painfully die because of causing so much pain and suffering to us/we poor Belizeans while you hoard up money you will never spend in this lifetime… Mr. Dean Barrow remember the world turns today for you tomorrow for us. (or as they say in Creole “tode fi yu tomaro fi me/we”) I hope that’s the way you spell it in creole, lol.. Mr. Barrow i know for a fact that you are not a man of your words… your words means nothing to the people you gave it to!!!

  2. Storm says:

    This development will be a good step in the right direction, assuming the details and substance of the new agreement are in line with what the PM boasts.

    Even if he is successful, I resent the PM taking every crisis — many of his own creation — as a chance for personal aggrandizement.

    President Reagan had a great motto, that went something like this: “You will be surprised how much you can accomplish, if you don’t care who gets the credit.”

  3. Ricky Malthus says:

    Barrow, you and brother Espat don’t know what you are doing and you continue to take the country down with you. We have to repay the debt and creditors have Mediratta to take care of their concerns. The principal thrust of this argument is to pay the bond. Then what? What are your plans to stimulate the economy ; plans to eliminate 33% unemployment ? How do you plan to increase real wages or income? How do you plan to increase consumption of local goods and services as the population is on starvation diet? Then what are your plans to increase investments on equal playing field without CORRUPTION? Barrow how do you motivate our industries to stimulate growth to increase exports and gain hard currency to pay for imports? How do you restructureCustom Duties, fuel taxes, GST, business and personal taxes? And how do you get the banks to yield on interest rates further? Barrow, you have to have both Micro and Macro plans to solvethe ” sustainable” debt payments and the economic mess you have created. The answer is not kneeling prostate in front of the creditors, but in economic discipline, hard work, just wages, low taxes, increased employment and opening credit for all by the banking system. And this is just the beginning.

  4. Retired CEO says:

    From listenning to the PM, it appears as if (Judas) Espat was not needed at all during the process. Sounds like the Speaker, Mike Peyrefette was the deal maker and most instrumental person in terms of making/using his contacts to influenced the outcome of this so-called deal. Unfortunately, it is very sad that the GOB invested so much money in this process, thus facilitating the traitor Espat with tax payers $$$. Just imagine the possibilities, in terms of what real deal will reveal in details when the term sheet will be prepared and made known to the populace. Fool di talk but da no fool di listen. This unscrupolous PM appears to think the Belizean people are all uneducated fools.

  5. Buju says:

    The thing that hurts most PUP’s that i have spoken with is that bright red shirt that Mark had on


    On a serious note this is a powerful step in the right direction for Belize as a country.

    Kudos to the PM and the negotiating team!

  6. Looking back says:

    @Buju. The red shirt does not bother the PUPs that much. They have come to accept who Mark is. Sooner rather than later, though, you will see Mark trying on a blue shirt if the commission on the bond savings is paid to brother Mike, the larger than life Mr. Speaker, instead of Hall Mark. It has always been about the Benjamins with Mark, y’all. He has never worked for someone else, much less the public; its always been about Mark.

  7. Louisville,Ky says:

    @ Ricky Malthus, the points you put forward are valid and, thought provoking……… Interesting indeed.
    It seems to me that the powers that be in this administration lacks the wherewithal to stimulate and grow the economy, whereas the previous administration grew the economy but turn round and ‘tief’ ‘out the money.
    Oh lawd, ah kian tek it no mo!
    It’s like being between the devil and the deep blue sea.

  8. Ricky Malthus says:

    @Louisville,Ky: What I write is meant not only to be thought provoking but to shake the foundations of our Colonial , servile thinking in all administrations. And here is another one. I castigate not only the administrations for their thorough lack of knowledge in managing an economy , but also the people for allowing themselves to acquiesce to the apparent non development of the country. For all this talk of growing the Belizean economy is folly. You see Mr. Kentuckian, to have growth in any economy, there first must be development. And as can be deduce from the actions and results from the government, there have been no developments, only pseudo everything. Merry Christmas.

  9. Retired CEO says:

    Very sadly so, in Belize we seemingly often times get hung up on personalities. No matter what anyone says are wears it has been and always was all about Mark. Now it is all about Dean and as it appears it may soon become all about Mike. I must repeat and agree with the famous words that was uttered by one blogger which was frequently stated by the former actor/president of the good ole US of A. ” You will be surprised how much can be accomplished if we don’t care who gets the credit “. The powers that are trying to be is lacking knowledge of what leadership is, and what it takes to lead the Jewel forward into economic prosperity. Unfortunately, for many Belizeans they are still believing that the PUP’s were all thiefs and crooks, nevertheless they displayed and demonstrated certain good leadership qualities. Yes, some of them were big time buisiness men, but that is one of the qualities of leadership, and sometimes buisiness men fail to make the best decisions. But the bottom line is some and many in the leadership in the PUP had a vision for the Jewel. When today, on the contrary most of those who are masquerading under the guise of leadership have myopic vision. Now then, it most certainly appears that we are in between the devil and deep dark sea, however, we have alternatives, believe it or not the PUP.s are not as bad as they are painted by the so-called powers that wanna be. Rise up Belizeans all is not loss, you still have options. Make desparate effort for changes. Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country. On a very serious note, imagine the possibilites. It is not what Dean can do, it is what you the people are not doing. Rise up!!!

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