BELIZE CITY, Tues. June 1, 2021– Today, the government of Belize issued a release announcing the extension of the expiration date of the Consent Solicitation that it had submitted to holders of the Superbond, until June 11, 2021.
The Consent Solicitation seeks to extend the grace period for the most recent scheduled payment on the debt, which had become due on May 20.
The Briceño administration’s announcement of an amendment to the Consent Solicitation comes as bondholders claim that he turned down the suggestion of a private meeting with the Credit Committee.
A statement released by the bondholders declared that they cannot support the Consent Solicitation due to what they view as the Belize’s government’s lack of openness to negotiations, and its refusal to veer from the terms of the initial proposal it had submitted to bondholders. It has not been confirmed whether they were making specific reference to GOB’s determination to avoid an IMF program and stick to a homegrown recovery plan.
According to Standard and Poor Global Ratings, Belize is currently seeking a 30% haircut and a maturity delay on its notes. The bondholders are complaining of a lack of transparency and have urged the country to sign on to an IMF support plan.
Prime Minister Hon. John Briceño, however, reiterated last week in the House of Representatives that the country would stick to its homegrown rebound plan.
The release from GoB stated, “The Supplement also notes for bondholders that the effect of the extension of the grace period sought by the Consent Solicitation Statement would be to extend the earliest date that a Principal Restatement (as defined in the Indenture), if any, were to occur in respect of the May 20, 2021 coupon payment [until] October 19 2021.”
It added that the supplement seeks to clarify information concerning the aggregate principal amount of Bonds currently outstanding.
According to S&P Global Ratings, the country owes US$526.5 million to bondholders. Payment of this bond is due in 2034.
According to their release, Global Bondholder Services Corporation is acting as the Information and Tabulation Agent. Bondholders are to get copies of the updated Consent Solicitation statement from them.