Turks & Caicos Islands Government Media Statement on Developer Walter Stipa
Providenciales – Thursday, 17 April 2015. In response to recent media reports concerning civil legal action in the US involving developer Walter Stipa and his companies, the Turks and Caicos lslands Government states the following in relation to Stipa’s $224m development there:
“The Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) Government takes its governance and anti-corruption responsibilities very serious indeed.
“As such, we have carried out appropriate due diligence works with regards to Mr Stipa’s Desarrollos Hotelco group and their proposals in the TCI. As due diligence is an ongoing process, we continue to request information from Desarrollos and other sources.
“Since 2012, this work has been led by the Government’s Investment Unit using several internationally recognised systems for corroborating and checking investor information, including: Thomson Reuters’ World-Check, a leading global ‘know your customer’ software system; Lexis Nexis’ World Compliance, another leading anti-money laundering, and risk and compliance screening tool. As part of the Government’s due diligence requirements the Desarrollos Hotelco group has also provided corporate documentation to substantiate shareholders and directors.
“In addition, the Desarrollos Ritz Carlton development in the TCI is being substantially financed by Marriott, a world leading luxury hotel chain. Marriott too met with the TCI Government to demonstrate their commitment to the success of this five star development. Desarrollos and Marriott have a proven track record of having already developed four successful resorts together in the Caribbean region.
“We are aware of the civil lawsuit against members of the Desarrollos Hotelco group. We are in receipt of representations from their attorneys, and note that those involved have filed defences in the US courts.
“Despite local speculation to the contrary, the development land for the five star Desarrollos Ritz Carlton development was purchased privately. No Crown Land has been transferred or leased to the Desarrollos Hotelco group. However, an application has been made for the leasing of a parcel of land of 0.46 acres in size. The land was publicly tendered and the tender having now closed, is being processed in accordance with the requirements of our Crown Land Ordinance.”
Three Days to NIB Rate Increase for 2023
By Dana Malcolm
#TurksandCaicos, March 29, 2023 – On April 1st, the second round of increases on contributions at the National Insurance Board will kick in for the Turks and Caicos workforce. Announced last year, the increases were instituted to keep the NIB from running out of money by 2027 as it services a population that is living longer with contributions that had not been increased in 30 years.
As the Government’s new financial year begins, increases at NIB will mean a higher cost for doing business and a higher cost for running the Government.
The private sector is expected to pay contributions at a rate of 11 percent on your taxable income. The hike is up from last year’s 10 per cent; six percent of which is to be paid by the Employer and five percent is to be paid by the Employee. For wages of $2000, this will mean a $200 improvement in income per month to the NIB. As for the burn on residents’ pockets, based on a minimum wage of $1200 monthly salary, that’s at least $60 dollars a month and $720 per year.
Public sector rates will move to 10.15 percent up from 9.15 per cent with the worker paying 4.575 per cent and the Government paying 5.575 per cent; that’s $54 a month and $648 a year at minimum wage.
The NIB rate as of April 1, 2023, will jump to 9 percent for self-employed individuals; For self-employed individuals at minimum wage, that is $108 dollars a month or $1296 per year.
As taxable incomes increase so will the contribution.
The increases follow a 2019 Actuarial review, undertaken every three years, which unearthed that the NIB was facing a dismal future, possible collapse. Contribution rates were growing at a rate much slower than NIB expenses, which included beneficiary payouts. On that trajectory, the NIB’s earnings would be eclipsed by its income by 2027, forcing the worker protection plan to draw down on money saved for economic shocks like Covid-19.
Unsurprisingly, this was deemed untenable, and an immediate increase was recommended.
Despite this scramble to boost earnings, the NIB has simultaneously increased payouts. Payouts for pensions, funeral grants, maternity grants and more will all attract bigger sums.
These incremental increases on contributions and payouts were all consultant recommendations, informed statements from the Board.
Work of NAECOB critical in ensuring high standards in education, says Minister Hanna-Martin
Bahamas Golden Jubilee Events Announced, Celebrations Across 33 Islands & Cays
#TheBahamas, March 27, 2023 – As the 50th anniversary of our nation’s independence approaches, Bahamians everywhere are teeming with excitement and expectancy around the year-long celebrations set by The National Independence Secretariat.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister joined H.E Leslia Miller Brice, Chair of The National Independence Secretariat to unveil the Calendar of Events for the 50th Independence celebrations.
The calendar comprises a host of events, initiatives and recommendations for celebrations throughout all 33 islands of The Bahamas.
At this jubilant occasion the PM stated, “Celebrating independence is about acknowledging the greatness around us, the greatness within us, and the greatness ahead of us.
We are Bahamians. That identity is special.”
View the newly released calendar of events here:
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