Ba­hamas PM re­ports progress on Baha Mar project

Jamaica Gleaner - - BUSINESS -

THE BA­HAMAS govern­ment is re­port­ing “con­sid­er­able progress” one month after it an­nounced an agree­ment had been reached on the re­mo­bil­i­sa­tion, com­ple­tion, sale and open­ing of the Baha Mar mega re­sort.

Prime Min­is­ter Perry Christie says The Ba­hamas and the Ex­port-Im­port Bank of China have signed off on the terms to get the US$3.5 bil­lion project restarted.

Baha Mar Lim­ited filed for bank­ruptcy in the United States in June 2015 amid missed dead­lines for com­ple­tion.

“The Exim bank is meet­ing its com­mit­ment in fund­ing re­main­ing con­struc­tion costs to com­plete the project, and a con­tract has been ex­e­cuted for China Con­struc­tion to com­plete the project,” Prime Min­is­ter Christie told re­porters late Mon­day. “Re­mo­bil­i­sa­tion is well un­der way and con­struc­tion works have com­menced. China Con­struc­tion is also in the process of re­solv­ing out­stand­ing amounts ow­ing its sup­pli­ers and con­trac­tors,” he said.

SIG­NAL ACHIEVE­MENT

“As I have said be­fore, th­ese ar­range­ments, which have been ap­proved by the Supreme Court of The Ba­hamas in a sealed or­der as is cus­tom­ary in com­mer­cial mat­ters of this kind, rep­re­sent a sig­nal achieve­ment for The Ba­hamas and a mile­stone in the trou­bled his­tory of Baha Mar,” Prime Min­is­ter Christie told re­porters late Mon­day.

Christie has ig­nored calls for dis­clo­sure of the terms of the agree­ment to restart the re­sort project, which is ex­pected to fea­ture a Las Ve­gas-style casino and more than 2,000 ho­tel rooms.

A claims com­mit­tee headed by Ambassador James Smith is over­see­ing pay­ment by Exim bank to thou­sands of for­mer Ba­hamian em­ploy­ees of Baha Mar, who are owed un­paid salaries, sev­er­ance pay, ac­crued va­ca­tion pay and no­tice pay­ments due to ter­mi­na­tion. Pen­sion con­tri­bu­tions are also be­ing re­paid, and the com­mit­tee is also set­tling claims against Baha Mar of Ba­hamian un­se­cured cred­i­tors, in­clud­ing con­trac­tors and sup­pli­ers.

“Exim bank has pro­vided the fund­ing and Ba­hamian un­se­cured cred­i­tors are asked to closely con­form with the no­tices and pro­ce­dures be­ing pub­lished

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