Bank calls in Clico debt

(Trinidad Exoress) NASSAU – FirstCaribbean International Bank has called in a nearly $500,000 debt owed by Clico Bahamas, further eroding policyholders’ chances of fully recovering their money tied up in the troubled insurance firm, The Nassau Guardian can confirm.

Up to Monday, Clico had not forwarded any payments to the bank, The Guardian understands. Clico Bahamas has two loans with FirstCaribbean, according to Clico ‘s 2007 financial statements.
The liquidator Craigg Gomez confirmed Monday night that he was in discussions with FirstCaribbean on how to proceed with the matter.

The properties used to secure the FirstCaribbean loan include a building in Freeport; commercial property west of Montrose Avenue; and properties on Solider Road, Montrose Avenue and in Golden Gates.
Total bank loans are more than $1 million. That includes a loan Clico Bahamas has with Belize Bank Limited. Clico’s accounts payable and accrued expenses are listed at just under $2 million.

Other creditors – those who are less secured than FirstCaribbean – have reportedly also lined up to be paid as the liquidator continues his assessment of the company’s assets and liabilities.

Gomez confirmed to The Nassau Guardian that financial packages had not yet been prepared for the insurance companies considering purchasing Clico Bahamas’ portfolio.

He said it was still too soon to say what policyholders would be getting back or whether their policies would be transferred to a new company. In the meantime, he reminded them that the best course of action was to continue paying their premiums.

“If we were to come to an arrangement, those polices will be acquired by the assuming company,” Gomez explained.
“If persons’ policies are still in force, those policies can be transferred to the acquiring company. If the policies were allowed to lapse as a result of people not making their premium payments, then naturally their policies could not be transferred to the acquiring company.”

He said no one knows right now which portions of the portfolio would be assumed by the successful purchaser or whether in fact there wwould be a buyer. (Nassau Guardian)

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