WHILE money in the bank earns just one per cent interest, members of the public can earn four per cent if instead they buy units/shares in a planned umbrella company of assets of the defunct Colonial Life Finance, including Republic Bank, Witco, Angostura and One Caribbean Media, said Finance Minister Colm Imbert.
He was addressing a People’s National Movement (PNM) meeting on Thursday at Diamond Vale, Diego Martin. Imbert said such investors will benefit themselves and help the country by generating public revenues to be used in job creation.
He listed present dividend earnings as Republic Bank (four per cent), Witco (six per cent), One Caribbean Media (six per cent) and Methanol Holdings (five per cent.) Trinidad Generation Unlimited, which he suggested might also be added to the National Investment Fund, generates dividends of six per cent.
Imbert said Clico owns 25 per cent of Republic Bank, 35 per cent of One Caribbean Media and 75 per cent of Angostura, among other assets. All assets total $10 billion and will secure the new fund.
“We’ll offer units to the public to get these kind of returns,” Imbert vowed. “We’ll price the fund so you’ll not lose your investment.” He forecast the fund’s prospectus being published by May and the Initial Public Offering to close in late June.
“I’m making an appeal – support your country and support yourself. Keep people in jobs.”
Earlier, he criticised certain supposed PNM members who he alleged had used obscene language when representing big shareholders of Clico in a meeting with the Government, even as Clico/CL Financial still owes the State $16 billion to repay the 2009 bailout.