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#387517 - 09/10/10 02:28 PM B.T.L. on the selling block
Marty Offline
Turning to news of a financial nature, it is known that Prime Minister Dean Barrow will use the occasion of Independence Day to announce the sale of shares in the government owned B.T.L. which he arbitrarily took over in August 2009. The sale was discussed today at a special meeting of the Social Security. There are reports that are emerging from the meeting of the investment committee that, if true, are disturbing. News Five was reliably informed that the S.S.B. and G.O.B. will be acquiring fifty-one percent of the B.T.L. shares. There has been no public notice of the investment but the pre-cooked deal is a clear cut case of a conflict of interest. The investment committee is chaired by Nestor Vasquez, who is also the chair of B.T.L. Lois Young, the secretary and legal advisor of B.T.L. is also the chair of SSB. So how is it that Vasquez and Young have become both the sellers and buyers of B.T.L. shares using the people’s pension fund? Well it boils down to the continuing incestuous relationship in the government. As to where the money for the sale will be drawn from, sources say that the local commercial banks will be most affected if SSB deposits are withdrawn to cover the purchase. It then seems likely that corrective measures will have to be taken by the banks in regards to liquidity and outstanding loans. There are two other parties named in the sale; Heritage Bank, which is very interesting since the Bank reported a loss in 2009 and again in the first two quarters of this year. Furthermore, S.S.B. is known to have investments in Heritage Bank so the obvious question is whether the bank’s investment will come from the SSB deposits. The other buyer named is Digicel Caribbean, which in return is to gain a lucrative contract to manage B.T.L. If you join the dots, you will come full circle with those Concerned Belizeans, who stand to benefit from the people’s pension fund. The P.M. will also be releasing the B.T.L. prospectus on Independence Day. The worth of B.T.L., we are told, has been determined at three hundred and eleven million dollars, merely half of what the previous owner has valued the company and compensation has not yet been settled. And when it is finally paid out, how is the Government going to fund the difference between the proceeds from the sale, and the compensation payment? And why don’t they agree on compensation before selling the company to remove risk? While the true financial position of B.T.L. is not known, what is known is that last year it recorded a decline in profits but an overall increase in expenses. News Five attempted to get confirmation but we were told that the manager of the investment committee and the C.E.O. could not be located in Belize City or Belmopan. We’ll have more on this story in the days to come.

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#387803 - 09/14/10 05:16 PM Re: B.T.L. on the selling block [Re: Marty]
TrueLover Offline
Great article. I hope people are paying attention. Seems humorous to me that it takes place on the same day as a celebration of freedom. Nice sentiment freedom. But where is it? Belize does not make it's own decisions nor control it's commerce. All the money made here flows out. I have yet to see proper use of funds for social needs like better police training, pay, and enforcement. In the courts, it seems the same. Near impossible to prosecute the guilty and have yet to see one politician serve time for corruption or their funds seized and use to repay the people of Belize for damages. Yet we all know it happens and who the guilty are. The sad truth is Belize is full of good people who have given up on changing for the better. The country could be a shining example of healthy commerce and an example of man living with nature. But the special interests of the few overshadow the well being of the many. When there is truth in accounting and truth in accountability then things will change.
_________________________
Writer claims no authority, worthwhile knowledge of any kind, and didn't make love to that woman.

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