NIS, GBTI among local investors for $30B GuySuCo bond

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The National Insurance Scheme (NIS) and the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI) are among local investors backing the $30 billion syndicated bond to run the operations Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo).

This was revealed by attorney Davendra Kissoon in a recorded interview which was aired on the Ministry of Finance’s Dollars and Sense programme Thursday evening.

Kissoon, a founding partner of London House Chambers, said the bond represented one of the largest financial transactions in the Caribbean, mainly due to the Government guarantee.

The bond comes with a 4.7% rate of return for the investors, he stated.

“This bond was over-subscribed, which meant that there were persons dying to put their money into Guyana on the strength of a government guarantee,” he stated, adding that “it certainly shows that we have a credible country and a credible economy.”

He said that the transaction shows the confidence of investors to be able to lend money to Guyana with the hope of recouping it.

“It’s exciting because in our conservative society this sort of thing has not been embraced and done before.

“What it shows is how quickly we can raise the money required for the purposes of development,” Kissoon stated.

Given the experience with the GuySuCo bond, the attorney said it was possible to raise as much as US$1 billion for various purpose-driven projects here.

“We can build the bridges we need, and the roads that we need in anticipation of the oil revenue coming to Guyana so long as it is sensibly done and properly managed; it’s a wonderful opportunity for all of us,” he stated.

Kissoon emphasized that Government asset-bearing and investment arm NICIL did not back the bond with any of GuySuCo’s assets.

As of December 31, 2017, all of GuySuCo’s assets were transferred to NICIL. The operations of GuySuCo is being managed by a Special Purpose Unit (SPU) of NICIL.

Kissoon explained that the $30 billion was raised solely on the Government’s promise to repay investors within five years – if the money is not repaid by NICIL

GuySuCo currently has only three estates in operation, namely Albion in Berbice, Blairmont in West Coast Berbice and Uitvlugt on the West Coast of Demerara.

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