Light at the end of the tunnel for nearly 4,000 BAICO policy holders in St. Kitts and Nevis, Cabinet applauds PM DouglasWritten by Jo-Ann Peters
BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, APRIL 24TH 2012 (CUOPM) – Some 4,000 policy holders of British-American Insurance Company (BAICO) are expected to benefit from the continuation of their policies following a US$30 million Liquidity Support Fund approved by the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) to capitalize and prepare the sale of BAICO’s traditional insurance business.
St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Information, Sen. the Hon. Nigel Carty in a Post Cabinet Briefing following Monday’s Cabinet Meeting said Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas, updated the Cabinet on the efforts of the governments of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) led by the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) to assist policy-holders who suffered immensely as a consequence of the collapse of the British American Insurance Company (BAICO) in recent years.
“The Rt. Hon. Prime Minister pointed out that the ECCU governments through the Monetary Council of the ECCB approved in early 2011 the use of US$30 million from the Liquidity Support Fund to recapitalise and prepare the sale of BAICO's traditional insurance business,” said Minister Carty.
He recalled that the Liquidity Support Fund is derived from the CARICOM Petroleum Fund that was established by Trinidad and Tobago in 2004 to provide relief to CARICOM Member States which were experiencing economic hardship resulting from persistently high international prices for crude oil and petroleum products.
“In assessing the kinds of insurance policies which were to be recapitalised and sold, traditional policies including whole life, endowments and term life policies were identified. However, Home Life Service, Ordinary Life and Universal Life policies have also been included,” said Minister Carty.
He disclosed that the Federation’s Minister of Finance gave notice that a number of bidders who had demonstrated an interest in the purchase of the recapitalised portfolios of BAICO's business were being engaged with a view to concluding the sale transaction during the course of the current year.
“It was further reported that 18,700 policy-holders would benefit from this important step taken by the governments of the ECCU, with St. Kitts and Nevis having, 3,960 beneficiaries, the second largest number of beneficiaries in any one country in the ECCU,” said Mr. Carty.
He said the Cabinet authorised Prime Minister Douglas, in his capacity as Minister of Finance to sign the required papers to effect the necessary transactions to help bring the extended ordeal of policy-holders in St. Kitts and Nevis to an end.
Minister Carty said Cabinet members applauded the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister for his sterling leadership on this specific matter and recognised the efforts of other leaders throughout the ECCU.