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A whopping 395 million dollars, that’s how much Government will have to pay Dunkeld International Investments Limited, an Ashcroft company after the three-member Permanent Court of Arbitration handed down its ruling yesterday. The payment is based on forty five million one hundred and ninety nine thousand nine hundred and sixty one shares at BZ $5.6547 per share.


In a press conference held today the Government told the media the final Telemedia Award was split in two. The first amount for the actual value of shares and the second amount for the accommodation agreement.


Screen_Shot_2016-06-29_at_8.11.28_PMJoseph Waight, Financial Secretary


“The total number of shares acquire was forty-five million one hundred and ninety-nine thousand nine hundred and sixty one. That was made of two components: thirty-four million one hundred and seven thousand hundred and seventeen shares from Dunkeld International Investments Limited and another eleven million ninety-two thousand and eight hundred and forty-four from the B.T.L. Employees Trust, those are the so called Sunshine shares. Together you get back up to the forty-five million one hundred and ninety-nine thousand nine hundred and sixty one shares – that’s the total number of shares acquired. The evaluation put by the tribunal was five dollars…five point six-five-four-seven per share. And they further split that evaluation; about forty percent came from the value of the company itself, the share itself; sixty percent was for the value of the accommodation agreement. If you take your forty-five million shares multiply it by five point six-five-four-seven, you get a gross figure, Belize dollars of two hundred and fifty-five million five hundred and ninety-two thousand two hundred and nineteen. That’s two hundred and fifty-five point five million dollars, Belize dollars. We made a partial payment of sixty-five million dollars sometime in September leaving a net amount of a hundred and ninety million dollars to be paid on the shares. The interest calculation now is roughly, and again, this is roughly because we don’t know what the outcome with a further a hundred and ninety-eight million dollars—interest on the Dunkeld shares, interest on the Sunshine shares. So together one ninety for the value of the company, one ninety-eight for the interest, you’re coming up with about three-eighty-eight million Belize dollars. From that, you add a little more cost, maybe another seven million dollars or so for legal costs and arbitration costs which would take your number up from three-eighty-eight to three-ninety-five. That’s what is owed and you split it in two; forty percent in U.S. dollars and sixty percent in U.S. dollars. Those are the numbers.”


As for the compensation for the Accommodation Agreement…….that money says the P.M will be invested on projects that will benefit the Belizean People.


Rt. Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


“Further of the $5.6547 valuation by the arbitration tribunal only $2.2674 dollars or 40% is actually for the shares so that $3.3873 or 60% of the so called per share value is actually compensation for the accommodation agreement. When we subtract the down payment of $65,087,944 Belize that we had already made on the award the balance that remains to be paid is by our calculations $191 million Belize dollars. Of that then fully 114.6 million Belizean dollars is for the accommodation agreement and it is only the rest of that 191 that is for the actual shares acquisition. The money as it says in the contract “shall be applied in accordance with such requests for grants as the government may reasonably make to fund projects to help the people of Belize”.”


And while some might believe that Lord Ashcroft got the sweeter deal, P.M begs to differ even though GOB also needs to pay a huge amount in interest payment from August 2009 to date, calculated at eight point three four percent.


Rt. Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


"The arbitration panel awarded 8.3% interest with the interest as I indicated also being split 40% for the acquisition of the shares and 60% for the accommodation agreement. Total interest in therefore by my calculation 198.2 million Belize Dollars."


And then there is the million dollar question…..where will the money for the payment of the award come from? That is not a problem says the P.M because there is an excess of liquidity in the financial system. The money says the P.M will be gotten by way of treasury bills and treasury notes and the 40 percent to be converted to US and sent abroad would be comfortably covered by Central Bank reserves.


Screen_Shot_2016-06-29_at_8.11.34_PMRt. Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize


“Under the arrangement we made, half of the totality of the Award is payable within ten business days with sixty percent being in Belize currency and forty percent in U.S.  The second half of the Award will be payable a year from now. Very simply, we will have no difficulty, especially in view of the excess liquidity in the financial system, getting all the money locally by way of the issue of Government T-Bills and T-Notes. And the forty percent that has to be converted into U.S. and sent abroad will also be fairly comfortably covered by Central Bank reserves. Second, please remember that we are currently selling sixty million dollars- worth of shares in B.E.L. and B.T.L.  Even after that there will still be a little more headroom for selling additional shares in B.E.L., and a lot more headroom for selling additional shares in B.T.L.  We anticipate being able to raise another seventy-five to one hundred million if we go that way, so that borrowing for the Award will be greatly lessened as a result. Of course, we would need to decide whether it is not preferable to hold on to the shares and use the dividends to service G.O.B. borrowing to pay compensation.”

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