Nation News - Parties tightlipped after meeting

The directors of CLICO Holdings Barbados Ltd. were summoned to meet Prime Minister David Thompson yesterday at Government Headquarters to discuss the next move for the company.

It looks like bad news. When the economy was booming, nobody cared that CLICO Holdings Barbados Ltd. was not complying with filing requirements. Now that things look bad, the public stands to lose money. Public funds are being invested in private companies, but the public is not being informed. Here is a quote from the Guardian:

Meanwhile, Tony Hoyos, a businessman and former ICBL chairman said, “A lot of things are going on outside of the public’s knowledge which is fair because Clico is still a privately-owned company and you can’t force them to do anything.”

(I have been told that CLICO Holdings Barbados Ltd.  sued the Barbados Corporate Registry, CAIPO, (case 1920 of 2005) to get a certificate of good standing despite missing a couple years of financial statements. I would love to know who the lawyers for CLICO were, as I recall that David Thompson represented them in another case!)  On February 21st, I wrote: Is “Weak” CLICO Barbados Subsidiary Bankrolling Trinidad HQ?, but on March 1st, Prime Minister David Thompson assured Bajans that the bailout money would stay in Barbados. He may not have the final say.

Hear what the Vincentian has to say in Say it ain’t so, Clico:

On April 3, 2009, a day after his return from the Clico, British American financial rescue mission in Antigua, Dominican PM Roosevelt Skerritt disclosed that “the Barbadian government gave a commitment that it will honour the obligations of Clico (Barbados) Holdings in the Eastern Caribbean.”

Both Clico (Guyana) and Clico (Suriname) have made claims of US$34 Million and US$15.5 million against the Clico (Barbados) owned Bahamian unit.

The Vincentian closed with:

Are we to believe that Clico operations throughout the region are at death’s door and Clico (Barbados) is financially sound? With more than EC$100 million of our people’s money invested in Clico and British American, Clico bosses should grasp a second chance to provide a better explanation for what has happened to our money.

The public made a mild fuss when PM David Thompson bailed out one of the CLICO family. Will the Barbados Government give the islands the $50 million they are asking for? Will the international courts force this issue? The Bajan public may have a rude awakening if it is found that the National Insurance Scheme has a major stake in the Barbados CLICO empire. There are many clouds over CLICO and Barbados.

Don’t be too quick to lay all of the blame on Mr. Thompson. Todays’ problems started under the Barbados Labour Party. Without integrity legislation, this story will repeat itself.


Grenada Broadcast, April 14, 2009: JOINT PRESS RELEASE FROM THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE
AND THE GRENADA AUTHORITY FOR THE REGULATION OF FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS (GARFIN)

The Government of Grenada and GARFIN are keenly aware that some policyholders of British American have experienced delays with payments on their matured policies.  In an effort to address this issue and to bolster public confidence, we wish to advise that Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and member states of the ECCU have agreed to establish a “Liquidity Support Fund” which would provide additional liquidity to the financial sector in the ECCU.

In relation to British American Insurance Company, the initial contributions toward the Fund would be comprised as follows:

** The Government of Trinidad and Tobago through the CARICOM Petroleum Fund – US $50 Million
** The Government of Barbados – US $5 million
** ECCU Governments and ECCB facilities  – US $10 Million
** Regional and International Organisations – US $15 million

Plan for CLICO policies

The Government of Barbados has advised of plans for the Insurance Corporation of Barbados to purchase CLICO International Life (Barbados).  The CLICO International Life entities in the ECCU are branches of CLICO International Life (Barbados).  The member Governments of the ECCU intend to give full support to this initiative.


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