Gov't Seeking Fair Share From Bank Purchases - Fahie

BVI Platinum News | December 02, 2019 8:14 am AST | 1 Comment
BVI Platinum News
December 02, 2019 8:14 am AST | 1 Comment
Photo Credit: Melissa Edwards/BVI Platinum News


(Photo Credit: Melissa Edwards/BVI Platinum News)

Government is paying close attention to two recent announcements regarding the sale of Scotiabank BVI and First Caribbean International Bank.

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The regulator, the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and the Government has not made a formal statement on the recent decisions, but when contacted by BVI Platinum News, Premier and Minister of Finance, Hon. Andrew Fahie assured that Government is seeking a 'fair share'.

"The Government of the Virgin Islands will ensure that the people of the Virgin Islands gets their fair share out of the two transactions," the Premier indicated in a brief comment.

Last week, Scotiabank BVI today announced the sale of its operations in the British Virgin Islands to Republic Bank
British Virgin Islands. A statement from the bank indicated that it had reached an agreement for the sale of 100% of its shares in Scotiabank (British Virgin Islands) Limited to Republic Financial Holdings Limited (“Republic Bank”).

The agreement is subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

"This transaction supports the Bank’s strategic decision to focus on operations across its footprint where it can achieve greater scale and deliver the best value for customers," Scotiabank BVI disclosed.

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Republic Bank is described as a leading financial institution founded in 1837 in Trinidad & Tobago, providing a broad range of financial services to individuals, corporate and institutional clients across the Caribbean. On October 31, 2019, Scotiabank completed the sale of its banking operations in Anguilla, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Maarten and St. Vincent & the Grenadines to Republic Bank.

Scotiabank has temporarily scrapped the sale of its holdings in Antigua and Guyana after regulatory and political push-back.

The announcement by Scotiabank follows closely news that Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) has struck an agreement to sell two-thirds of its stake in Barbados-based CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank (CIBC FCIB) to a company run by Colombian billionaire Jaime Gilinski.

As first reported by BVI Platinum News earlier this month, that deal is said to worth some $797M and is seen as part of a wider shift in regional banking that has seen Canadian operators reduce their footprint the Caribbean.

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