It is well over three years now since the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) has been trying to collect some $1.7B from its debtors, including the Guyana Sugar Coporation (GuySuCo); BaiShanLin Forest Development Inc.; Caricom Insurance; Sithe Global; and Hong Kong Golden Telecommunications Company, all without any success.
According to records, GuySuCo owes $17M; BaiShanLin owes $25M; Caricom Insurance owes $121M; Sithe Global owes $151M; and Hong Kong Golden Telecommunications Company owes US$5M.
The previous Chief Executive Officer of NICIL, the late Mr Horace James, had said that the company was too weak financially to go after the outstanding sums. But acting CEO, Mr Colvin Heath London confirmed with the Guyana Standard recently that this is not the case. He added that the issue was not placed on the back burner. He said, “The total level of outstanding receivables has marginally decreased, but this is largely attributable to those large sums remaining outstanding at the end of 2018. The outstanding balances mentioned in your question are either part of a legal dispute or being pursued in some other way.”
London added, “NICIL is not as financially powerful as it once was. There is a large asset base which the team is currently making efforts to monetise via various projects and other revenue-generating initiatives; which once successful will improve the level of income generation needed to sustain and grow the entity in the future.”
Since being appointed to NICIL as head of its Special Purpose of Unit (SPU), and now acting CEO, London said that he has found a number of weaknesses within the entity, all of which he says will be addressed in due course.
The CEO said that high on his agenda to address is NICIL’s outdated human resource policy and the absence of an integrated information system. He said that the archaic human resources policy has since been reviewed and recommendations were provided for new and updated policies.
He said too that the invitation for Tender for an integrated information system is currently available and bids are expected no later than March 22, 2019. London noted that full implementation of the Integrated Information System is expected in the second quarter of 2019.