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– Corporation wants NICIL to pay

There are about a dozen pickup trucks sitting in a dealer’s warehouse.

For two months now, the dealer has reportedly been asking to get paid.

Kaieteur News was told that several months ago, cash-strapped Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) reportedly ordered 14 pickups- 12 extended cabs and two double cabs.

The pickups were ordered with no payments from GuySuCo.

The vehicles were stored in Suriname but the sister dealership decided it could not hold the units anymore and shipped them to Guyana.
The local dealer has been asking for its money.

According to Government officials and GuySuCo sources, the dealer said that GuySuCo has signaled that NICIL is paying the $80M-plus bill on the trucks.

Two of the pickups have already been collected and paid for by GuySuCo. However, NICIL is not stumping up the cash.

For several months now, NICIL has reportedly refused to pay over more than $8B to GuySuCo from a $30B bond it took.

This was after Republic Bank (Trinidad), which holds the bond, raised questions about how GuySuCo is spending the money it already received.
For six months now, GuySuCo has not received any further money.

The state-owned, three-estate corporation has been battling even more to stay alive even though four estates have been separated to be divested.
It currently has only Uitvlugt, Blairmont and Albion estates under the GuySuCo flagship.

This year, the corporation is also unlikely to meet a revised 100,000 tonnes. It falls short of that by 15,000.

GuySuCo and NICIL have been crossing swords over that $30B.

However, NICIL is insisting that the money must be used for certain immediate expenses and retooling.

The bond was negotiated and controlled by NICIL, using a number of other corporations as collateral.

Among the projects targeted by the bond is the acquisition of two co-generation plants; upgrade of existing factories; the production of Plantation White Sugar; the construction of more storage and packaging facilities and the financing of two years of general operational costs.
NICIL had been criticised by the Ministry of Agriculture, which has responsibilities for GuySuCo, for the seeming sloth in the disbursements of the funds.

NICIL has been insisting that if there is any default on the bond payments, it is not GuySuCo’s assets that can be seized. Rather, it is NICIL’s assets that will suffer.

Several state-owned companies which have their assets pledged to secure the bond are the Guyana Oil Company, Guyana National Shipping Corporation, Guyana National Printers Limited and even facilities of the Guyana National Industrial Company.

GuySuCo had seven estates up to 2015, but was struggling to pay workers and retool.

It had been demanding billions of dollars annually in bailouts.

Following an inquiry into the industry, the Coalition closed four estates – Skeldon, Rose Hall, Enmore and Wales, placing over 5,000 workers out of jobs.

GuySuCo is one of the biggest state-owned companies, but low world prices, loss of its preferential market in Europe, aging factories and a large migration of workers, have not been helping.

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Source: Kaieteur News.

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