Archive for the ‘international agreements’ Category

Belize signs UN Convention against Corruption

Friday, December 9th, 2016

As the world observed International Anti-Corruption Day, the Government of Belize signed the United Nation’s Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).

Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber officially signed the UNCAC treaty on December 9, 2016, so Belize became the 184th country to sign this convention.

After discovering an array of scandals within the Government, the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU), along with citizens of this country and other organizations demanded action from the government. Officials from the Government of Belize and members of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry, signed the treaty making the jurisdiction a signatory of the UNCAC.

At the signing ceremony, Faber said expressed his pleasure to make Belize a signatory of the Convention that this will aid in championing the issues of corruption in Belize. He added that it is only one step forward in the development of Belize and that the government is glad to be a part of a global effort in fighting against corruption and fostering the development of countries and their people. The signing reveals the start of the development of the framework for the upcoming work plan of the Government under the Convention.

In his address, Volkmann said, “I can assure you and the people of Belize that the UN, particularly UNODC and UNDP, we are ready to help Belize on its way to bring in the experience from other countries, to bring in the technical expertise this is needed to move forward on a way that in fact is a task of the Belizean government, the Belizean society, to find the right ways to end corruption and be more transparent.”

Prime Minister Barrow signed an Instrument of Accession submitted to the UN Secretary General after the Senate ratified the notion on November 30, 2016.

The UN Convention focuses on 5 main aspects:

– Preventive Measures;
– Criminalization and Law Enforcement;
– International Cooperation;
– Asset Recovery;
– Technical Assistance and Information Exchange.

It also consists of 71 Articles, divided into 8 Chapters. The Convention details anti-corruption measures that signatories are required to implement within their laws and institutions. These measures aim at preventing corruption, including domestic and foreign bribery, embezzlement, trading in influence and money laundering.

Belize and UAE signed bilateral trade agreements

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

Belize has signed bilateral trade agreements with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which will become the basis for inflow of private sector, as well as government investments from this country, and will strengthen Belize’s position as the regional energy leader. The model of Belize Natural Energy Limited (BNE) was extremely important in signing the agreement to build relationship between the countries.

Oil was discovered in Belize ten years ago, and BNE believes that the country can share UAE’s experience and vision that the discovery of oil is only the start of economic success story of the country, the UAE providing necessary financial and knowledge-based resources to achieve the success.

Belize signs TIEA with Switzerland

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

On August 10, 2015, Belize and Switzerland signed a tax information exchange agreement (TIEA).

The agreement provides for the exchange of information upon request. For Belize, it covers the income tax, business tax, and general sales tax. In case of Switzerland, it covers Swiss federal, cantonal, and communal taxes on income and capital, and the cantonal and communal inheritance and gift taxes.

Consultation of Belize jurisdiction concluded by IMF team leader

Monday, May 12th, 2014

On April 28 – May 9 the team of International Monetary Fund (IMF) visited Belize jurisdiction, with the purpose to hold discussions in the context of Belize’s 2014 Article IV Consultation mission. The IMF team, led by Jacques Bouhga-Hagbe, met with Belizean Prime Minister Dean Barrow, Financial Secretary Joseph Waight, Central Bank Governor Glenford Ysaguirre, and other government and central bank officials, representatives of the private sector, opposition members and labour unions.

The leader of the IMF mission concluded the visit with the statement, including information on the growth of the Belizean economy by only 0.7% in 2013, because of continued decline in oil production and weak agricultural output. Also, according to his statement, inflation in the country decreased to 0.5%, from 1.3% in 2013. While declining, Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) remained high at 17.6 percent of total loans at end 2013. The banking system’s capital buffers improved and weaknesses in the system were addressed. International reserves improved to 4.3 months of imports (up from 3.3 months at end-2012), mainly due to PetroCaribe financing and private capital inflows. The primary fiscal surplus for FY2013/14 is estimated to have fallen to 1 percent of GDP, from 1.4 percent of GDP in FY2012/13.

Mr. Bouhga-Hagbe stated: “Risks continue to be tilted to the downside as additional external vulnerabilities could arise from a protracted period of weak growth in advanced economies or complications with PetroCaribe financing. New oil discoveries and growth-enhancing projects that are currently being implemented or envisaged could mitigate these risks… In this context, the mission pointed to the benefits of a more ambitious fiscal stance to create credible policy buffers that would help address downside risks. This could be achieved by a combination of revenue, expenditure, public financial management, and debt management measures. The mission also expressed the view that current efforts to further strengthen the banking system should continue.”