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GOB broke? Talk of wage freeze as Government approaches SSB to buy utility shares

Posted: June 22, 2016. 12:09 p.m. CST.

By Aaron Humes: Even as the International Monetary Fund’s “strong medicine” prescription for the Hugo Patteconomy gains reaction among its opponents, the Government is seeking other sources of cash.

Yesterday Minister of Labour Hugo Patt denied any contemplation of a wage freeze, dismissing the IMF report as “opinion.”

But it has been confirmed that gas prices are headed up, and yesterday according to NEWS 5, the Social Security Board has been approached to buy up to $55 million in shares in Belize Telemedia Limited and Belize Electricity Limited. Prime SSBMinister Dean Barrow pitched special arrangements on placement of shares and prices.

The Investment Committee has met to consider the proposal and though CEO Richard Flowers would not comment on camera, the proposal now goes to the main board for approval.

Speaking with News 5, Board Chairman Douglas Singh cited the hundreds of millions in excess liquidity held by SSB and previous high returns.

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