Prime Minister Dean Barrow has applauded the decision taken by the Honorable the Minister of Works and Transport Mr. Rene Motero to revoke the lease for the Commerce Bight Port.
A statement from the office of the Prime Minister notes that “the decadent state in which the Commerce Bight Port was found after being in private hands for over 11 years shows the ugly face of the misguided policy of unbridled privatization pursued by the PUP Government when vital national assets were sold out for short-term gains.”
The lease for the Commerce Bight Port was revoked on Thursday and the government of Belize took immediate control of the facility.
The government statement quotes Prime Minister Barrow as saying that the port privatization of the previous PUP administration “has proved to be a dismal failure.”
The official statement goes on to say that “the so-called ‘strategic investor’, Port of Belize Ltd. owned by businessman Luke Espat, to whom Port Loyola was sold and Commerce Bight Port leased in 2002, is now in receivership. All the grandiose development plans for the two Ports which were given as the reason for privatization are now no more than a dream. “
Prime Minister Barrow says his United Democratic Party (UDP) administration “is left to pick up the pieces and salvage what it can from the monumental wreck left behind by the previous administration after their 10 years in office.”
But this Government, says the Prime Minister, will not be deterred by the challenges that may be encountered in the process and will not hesitate from taking decisive action, wherever necessary in the national interest.
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