General — 18 June 2013 — by -press release-

The Ministry of Finance has categorically denied a statement made by the Leader of the Opposition that the letter of March 24, 2005, signed by him and the then Prime Minister, which purported to extend the term of the Management Services Agreement for the International Business Companies Registry and the Shipping Registry for another seven years from 2013 to 2020, had been vetted by officials of the Ministry of Finance.

Gian Gandhi, who has been legal advisor in the Ministry of Finance for the last 13 years, says that at no time was his advice sought on the validity of this letter and that the first time he saw it was last month when it was produced by Belize International Services Limited in response to a letter from the Financial Secretary.

Gandhi also says that he has carefully looked through the Cabinet Briefing Notes for the period January 1, 2003 to March 31, 2005, prepared by the then Cabinet Secretary, Robert Leslie, and that he found absolutely no mention of extension of term of the Management Services Agreement for the IBC and Shipping Registries.

This contradicts the Leader of Opposition’s claim that the extension letter had been approved by Cabinet.

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