GOB Prepares for the Climate Change Summit

As the Government prepares to head north for the Climate Change Summit in the UK, members of the delegation are preparing to enter into meetings with multiple organizations in an effort to attract investments in Belize as well as to capitalize on several sources of funding. One of those funds is the Green Climate Fund (GCF). Earlier this month, the GCG announced the availability of some one hundred and twenty-five million dollars available for climate related projects. According to the CEO in the Ministry of Economic Development, Dr Osmond Martinez, the government is aggressively seeking to boost the economy.

John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize:Following the acquisition ScotiaBank Belize Limited changed its name to Belize Bank Corporation Limited and the merger process began. The merger to be completed by 31st December of this year. What this bill seeks to do is to provide the authorization for the vesting of certain assets and undertaking of what was formally Scotiabank Belize Limited into the Belize Bank Limited. Simply put Mr.Speaker what was under the control of Scotiabank Limited will now be under the control of Belize Bank. So if you had gotten a loan from Scotia that loan will be taken over by the Belize Bank. In order to ensure a seamless transition for customers of both banks CIHL has requested the assistance of the Government of Belize by way of the enactment of legislation which would ensure the vesting in the Belize Bank of all existing assets, liabilities, rights, obligations and other property of Belize Bank Corporation in accordance with a business transfer agreement executed between both banks. It is to be noted that no land or buildings is being transferred to Belize Bank by Belize Bank Corporation under the terms of the business transfer agreement. In this case the wording of this vesting bill is almost identical to the wording of the legislation which was enacted for the transfer of the undertaking of the Bank of Novascotia in Belize to it’s then Belize subsidiary. The Central Bank of Belize has been consulted and they confirm that they have been continuously monitoring from a regulator perspective the merge process. They have no objection of this proposed enactment on the vesting bill as part of the completion thereof. I’m asking the honorable house to vote in favor of this bill to effect the completion of the merger of these two banks by way of vesting the assets and undertaking of the Belize Bank Corporation into the Belize Bank Limited. Mr.Speaker the bill has the recommendation of the Cabinet.”

Dr.Osmond Martinez, CEO, Ministry of Economic Development “GCF yes you know they had approved $125 million US dollars for coral reef protection. Nonetheless that’s not the only money that they have and they have allocated one billion dollars for this region, for the Caribbean region and only 20% of it has been disbursed so far. So we’re looking forward to how Belize can tap into it. We are privileged to have the Five Cs in Belize which is the regional climate change center and they have been working very closely with the public sector, with the NGOs and now moving on to the private sector to see how we can tap in with GCF not only to get grants for projects but also concessionary loans so that we can assist the private sector in anything that falls within the framework of climate change.”

Earlier this month the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board approved 13 new projects for mitigation and adaptation action with an allocation of one point two billion US dollars in GCF resources for climate action.