(Trinidad Guardian) Finance Minister Colm Imbert said on Thursday that the debt owed by Clico to Government is finally being settled.
“As an initial step, we’re monetizing approximately TT$4 billion of that debt with an Initial Public Offering of 49.9 per cent of the shareholding of a newly-incorporated company: National Investment Fund Holding Company.
“Into this will be transferred the selected assets of Colonial Life Insurance Company (Trinidad) Limited (Clico) and Clico Investment Bank (CIB) in liquidation, as well as an appropriate shareholding of Trinidad Generation Unlimited (TGU).”
The initial public offering is in June 2018, Imbert said, adding he projects realising revenue from this by the end of July 2018.
On the recovery of TT$23 billion pumped into the 2009 Clico bailout, Imbert said, “To date, as part of the first distribution of assets from Clico Investment Bank, a total of 42,475,362 shares of Republic Bank, valued at TT$4.3 billion, have been transferred directly to the Corporation Sole and/or state enterprises and Clico, for onward transfer to the Government.
“This represents 26 per cent of Republic Bank. A further 25 per cent of Republic Bank was already held by the Clico Investment Fund. In addition, 23 per cent of One Caribbean Media, valued at TT$200 million, has been transferred to the Corporation Sole and/or state enterprises and Clico for onward transfer to Government, as well as 29.9 per cent of Angostura valued at TT$1.07 billion, 5.4 per cent of WITCO valued at TT$402 million and 19.5 million shares of Home Construction, valued at TT$476 million.”
He added, “Government has also recovered TT$3.8 billion in cash so far from Clico since September 2015 and lands in Tobago valued at TT$186 million for the proposed Sandals Resort.
“Government is also actively pursuing the sale or acquisition of shares held in Methanol Holdings International Limited, valued at over TT$2 billion, as well as the recovery of TT$500 million in bonds. There remains a further 40 per cent of Angostura held by CL Financial and/or Clico, among other assets to be recovered. “
He said a selected portfolio of these assets will be placed in the National Investment Fund for an offer for sale to the public in 2018.
“We anticipate that in the first instance, the value of the shares that will underwrite the fund will be between TT$8 billion and TT$10 billion, of which we plan to offer up to 49.9 per cent in this year 2018.
Also, he said seven years after it was placed in compulsory liquidation, Clico Investment Bank has made its first dividend distribution to its creditors, including Government.