July 1, 2014
A calculated, ill-informed, politically motivated assault on the operations of the National Industrial & Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) and its senior management has been driven in the media by A Partnership for National Unity (APNU). These reports have no foundation nor basis in fact, but are made with the clearly deliberate intention of undermining and discrediting the major development projects initiated and lead by the company.
The National Industrial & Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) was incorporated under the Companies’ Act in July 1980, but began functioning as a Company in July 1991. In 2002, NICIL and the Privatisation Unit were operationally merged. A Management Cooperation Agreement (MCA) was signed appointing the Privatisation Unit as exclusive manager of NICIL and reaffirming that privatisation of NICIL’s assets would be conducted in accordance with the Privatisation Policy Framework Paper of 1993 (White Paper on privatisation).
NICIL is a holding company owned by the Government of Guyana, and functions as a commercial company which does not benefit from tax concessions and is expected to be and is, in fact, financially self sufficient. The primary objectives of NICIL are to subscribe or acquire or dispose of Government shares, stocks, debentures or other securities of any company, cooperative societies or corporate bodies.
NICIL’s operations have always been subject to public scrutiny and NICIL is accountable and answerable to the Cabinet for its financial transactions made on behalf of the country. NICIL’s finances are subject to full public disclosure. NICIL is audited by the Audit Office of Guyana. The company has received unqualified audit opinions each year, since 2002 (the year NICIL and the Privatisation Unit were operationally merged), acknowledging the Financial Statements to be a true and fair view in all material respects of the financial position of NICIL up to 31st December, 2012. This unqualified opinion also endorse that the financial performance and cash flows of the company are in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the IAS Board.
NICIL’ s privatisation transactions from 1993 to 2011 have been published in a report released by President Ramotar last year, listing every privatisation in the period and identifying the buyer and the proceeds from the sales.
NICIL’s operations, contrary to the repeated complaints of the parliamentary opposition, are subject to parliamentary oversight. The Minister of Finance has laid the Annual Report, including the Audited Financial Statements of NCIL for the year 2012, before Parliament. Since 2002, NICIL has successfully endeavored to bring its own and the accounts of its subsidiaries up to date. In doing so, the company has filed in Parliament, to date, 149 sets of accounts representing the accounts of its various subsidiaries in the various years since 2002.
NICIL owns a number of subsidiaries, including Guyana National Printers Limited, the National Communications Network, Guyana National Newspapers Limited, Guyana Oil Company Limited, Guyana National Shipping Corporation Limited, Property Holdings Inc., Kwakwani Utilities Inc., and Lethem Power Company Inc. NICIL also holds minority investments in a number of companies.
NICIL’s subsidiary companies are managed and operated by independent Boards and are financially independent, excepting the National Communications Network, which provides a combination of commercial and public programming and its satellite electricity utilities, where subsidies are used to compensate for lower tariffs in the communities in which they serve.
The NICIL Group of Companies employs a substantial number of persons, between them, making a considerable contribution in company and employee taxes to the economy of the country.
NICIL has, from 2002 to 2013, paid into the Consolidated Fund $11.9 billion in dividends from the profits of its operations and its various and ongoing investments. The company is a net contributor to the Treasury and, its operations remains fully accountable and transparent.
Copies of NICIL’s Annual Reports and the other Reports referred to above, are available on NICIL’s website: www.privitisation.gov.gy