Introduction As testimony to the present dire state of Guyana’s sugar industry and its continued importance to the socioeconomic, political, and cultural life of the country, last week I began a third series of columns on this topic in the space of only three years.
Tipping point Alarmed at the crisis state of the sugar industry in 2011, I devoted more than a score of Sunday columns in that year (May 29 to October 16) to its discussion and drew attention to the crying need for radical reform and restructuring.
Introduction Last week I drew readers’ attention to the far more potent threat facing tax evaders and money launderers operating in and through Guyana, than the activities of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and its regional counterpart, the Caribbean Financial Task Force (CFATF).
Introduction If perchance any reader might have had doubts about the serious intent of the United States as it opens a new front against tax evasion and money laundering, under its Foreign Account Tax Compli-ance Act, 2010 (FATCA), he or she should ponder the pointed remarks made by a Senior United States Treasury official (Robert Stark) on September 2013: “Offshore tax evasion is a significant contributor to the tax gap.” As a result of this, FATCA is designed: “To establish a process for foreign financial institutions (FFIs) to report information about their US account holders to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).” The IRS has further stated its objective very clearly: “It is to catch tax evaders.” When considered carefully, the implications of this development for Guyana are stunning in the extreme.
Introduction In my current series of Sunday columns on countering money laundering and the risks of terrorist financing and proliferation I have consistently advanced what I consider to be the fundamental view that the financial crime of tax evasion is the primary driver of money laundering.
Introduction As indicated last week that column was prompted by the seemingly orchestrated public statements by private organizations, steps being taken by the US Treasury against tax evasion in the region as well as diplomatic and other pressures brought to bear on the parliamentary “opposition.” All this supposedly in the expectation that it would accede to the legislative amendments before the Special Select Committee and therefore not pursue “the goal of effective money laundering reform” designed to reduce the economic burden this deep-seated problem heaps on the country.
Well-orchestrated As stated last Sunday it was my intention to bring the series of columns on money laundering to an end.
Conclusion This week’s column indicates the remaining markers that go along with the strategic guideposts provided earlier for a way forward in dealing with Guyana’s situation in regard to money laundering, the financing of terrorism and proliferation.
The Schedule below summarizes the key features of the strategic guideposts for a way forward presented in the two previous columns.
This week I shall address the two remaining strategic guideposts in designing a road map for the way forward in dealing with money laundering and related challenges in Guyana.
Introduction For the remaining columns in this series on money laundering in Guyana, I shall concentrate on portraying a strategic road map for the way ahead, in light of the current impasse in Guyana’s relations with the Caribbean Financial Action Force (CFATF).
Last week’s column carried a brief description of the current situation of Guyana in regard to the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF).
Introduction In the previous two columns the prevailing architecture of global anti money-laundering regulation under the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) was introduced by way of the seven major groupings of the targeted areas within which this structure is organized.
Introduction Last week’s column provided a brief synopsis of the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) international standard.
International standards As indicated in last week’s column, the original publication of the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) Forty Recommen-dations took place in 1990.
Introduction As I continue the series on money laundering and looking back on last week’s column, perhaps the main original contribution so far has been putting forward the thesis that there have been three principal drivers pushing money laundering and related concerns to the level of the massive global threat these now represent.
OFCs and tax havens The origins of money-laundering as a global phenomenon are closely tied to the international spread of offshore financial centres (OFCs) and the opportunities these provide for the spread of tax avoidance and evasion; the latter being of course a criminal offence.
Introduction At this point of the ongoing discussion of the money-laundering situation in Guyana, readers would have come to realize that they cannot expect to form an intelligent appreciation of this issue, and as a result the several serious challenges which the country presently faces, without, at the very least, a rudimentary appreciation of the basic contextual issues surrounding this phenomenon.
Introduction This week’s column provides a highly condensed, yet hopefully accurate portrayal of the origins of money laundering, which as we shall observe is a uniquely modern phenomenon.
Introduction In my recent Sunday Stabroek columns I have sought thus far to provide a background for assessing the money laundering situation in Guyana, with specific regard to examining its local, regional, and international regulatory regimes.
Last week the question was tackled: what is money laundering? This week we look at the techniques and circumstances, which give it traction in Guyana and the wider Caricom region.
Introduction The two topics that have dominated national as well as parliamentary debates on Guyana’s political economy in recent months are, namely, the future of the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project and Guyana’s money-laundering legislation in light of its regional and global regulatory obligations.
Conclusion The last topic left to be considered in this rather extended appraisal of the management of Guyana’s public investment programme is its third and fourth phases, namely, project management and implementation and the conduct of ex-post evaluation audits of projects.
Conclusion Today’s column concludes the discussion of the Amaila Falls Hydro Project (AFHP).
Judging by the numerous requests which I have received from readers to comment on the Hydropower Purchase Agreement (PPA) between GPL and Amaila Falls Hydropower Inc (AFH Inc) this seems to be, by far, the public’s most troubling concern about the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project (AFHP).
Part 6 Last week’s column indicated that the financing arrangements for the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project (AFHP), envisaged GPL playing a pivotal two-pronged role.
Part 5 In this week’s column and the next I shall wrap up my discussion of the financing arrangements through which the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project (AFHP) is being executed.
Project finance Last week I had indicated that this week’s column would be devoted to the further elaboration of the financing structure of the Amaila Falls Hydro Project (AFHP).
Last week’s column summarized the geo-technical features of the troubled Amaila Hydropower Project (AHP).
Introduction There has been, surprisingly, very little consistent and sustained official information flows to the public aimed at improving their awareness and understanding of the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project (AFHP).
Part 1 Introduction Last week’s column completed the discussion of Phase 2 of the management of Guyana’s public investment programme (that is, project selection and sequencing).
Scope This week I shall conclude the discussion on the selection of public projects in Guyana and their sequencing.
This week I continue my discussion of Phase 2 (project selection and sequencing) in managing Guyana’s public investment programme.
Introduction In recent Sunday columns, I have divided Guyana’s public investment management programme into four sequential phases.
Introduction In assessing Guyana’s public investment strategy I have described both the Marriott Hotel project and the presidential spectrum giveaways as “opportunistic rogue investing.” Both activities reveal an abysmal absence of public information, as well as zero opportunities for independent/scrutiny of the methodology employed in their selection.
Introduction Last week’s column argued that because the Marriott project has no discernible origins in the most recent complete and systematic indication of the government’s investment strategy (the 2011-2015 Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper) it is fair to assess that project as an opportunistic rogue investment.
Revealed public investment strategy Last week’s column identified source documents from which the PPP/C’s public investment strategy might be revealed, thereby providing the basis for an assessment of its management.
Introduction This week I am going to examine the PPP/C’s pubic investment strategy.
Introduction As earlier indicated I intend to merge the ongoing discussion of Guyana’s public investment management into what is, hopefully, a fruitful consideration of the National Budget, 2013.
Introduction: At the end of last week’s column I had indicated that, beginning this week, I would merge my on-going consideration of the decision-making process in regard to Guyana’s public investment projects into a wider discussion of the National Budget 2013.
Introduction In this week’s column I start with a wrap-up of the discussion on uncertainty and risk as applied to government projects and then go on to offer brief comments on the notion: time is money.
Introduction The list of troubled government projects in Guyana is long and getting longer by the day.
Introduction If, as I observed in last week’s column, removing the unrelenting glare of public scrutiny from government spending is a certain recipe for the entrenchment of waste and inefficiency, then one important corollary follows.
Scarcity and choice As a prelude to my intended discussion of the 2013 Annual National Budget after it is presented to the National Assembly later this month, in last week’s column I had started an appraisal of the management of government investment spending in Guyana.
Economic efficiency In last week’s column I concluded the series of columns commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Third World Debt Crisis (TWDC) and addressing the performance of Guyana’s public indebtedness since then.
Conclusion Policy options pursued This week I wrap up my columns commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Third World Debt Crisis (TWDC) and Guyana’s fortunes in this regard since 1982.
Part 3 Economic growth As I bring this discussion on Guyana’s public debt behaviour since 2006 to an end, I direct attention to its broader macroeconomic context.
Part 2 Introduction This week I continue the discussion of the burden of Guyana’s public indebtedness since the official introduction of its rebased 2006 price series GDP estimates.
Part 1 Problems of measurement For my remaining columns commemorating the Third World Debt Crisis (TWDC) I shall focus the discussion on Guyana’s public debt situation since 2006.
In this and the next couple of columns to follow, I shall broadly address Guyana’s public debt situation since the eruption of the Third World Debt Crisis (TWDC) in 1982, the year in which Guyana also announced its first default on its public debt obligations.