Govt settles $1.003bn legacy debt

The Ghana Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors (CBOD) says it has received from the government, US $1.003 billion being full and final payment for legacy debts owed the Bulk Oil Distribution Companies (BDCs) from 2012 to 2020.

According to the Chamber, the government on January 13, 2020 “finalised all payments of the debts accrued over the period July 2011 to June 2015 plus interest capped at March 2018″.

A press release signed by Senyo Hosi, CBOD Chief Executive Officer in Accra yesterday, said the payments were executed in the form of ESLA Bonds to Legacy Bonds Limited, an SPV jointly owned by the Ghana Association of Bankers and the CBOD for redistribution to beneficiary banks and petroleum service providers.

It said cash payments constituted $444.72million, Bank of Ghana Bonds, $219.08million while ESLA Bonds were $339.28million adding that, “All claims were duly validated by Ernst and Young”.

The BDC legacy debt, it said comprised three categories, including the Forex Loss Under-Recovery (FLUR) of806.25million dollars which was incurred by government in the period July 2011 to June 2015.

“This refers to the loss incurred by BDCs as a result of the differentials between the GHS/USD forex rates set by the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) for pump prices and the rates at which FX rates were supplied by the Bank of Ghana on behalf of government,” it said.

The Forex Loss Under-Recovery Interest (FLURI) category, which refers to interest accrued on the delayed payments of forex loss under-recoveries was 99.67million dollars and was accrued by government with a tenor cap set at March 31 2018.

A total of 97.16million dollar debt was accrued by government with a tenor cap set at March 31, 2018 and this was categorised as ‘Real Value Factor’ which referred to the interest accrued on the delayed payments of price under-recoveries.

Of the total debt, 432.00million dollars was waived by BDCs and banks under what is termed as ‘Haircut’, with details being Forex Loss Under Recovery Attribution ($55 million), unconfirmed transactions by Bank of Ghana ($93 million).

It expressed gratitude to various stakeholders including President Nana Akufo-Addo and Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia for their leadership and commitment to honouring their promise to fully resolve the BDC Legacy Debt, especially after a stalemate in negotiations with government in 2016.

It also thanked Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, the Economic Management Team and the negotiation committee as well as the former President John Mahama and the late former Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur for their acceptance and commencement of the validation process and payments.

BY TIMES REPORTER

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