Does White Oak Have a Plan B?
The Mia Mottley government forced a debt restructure on locals holding bonds. The government boasted about the speed it was completed although truth be told it was.
On the other side of the debt restructuring transactions the external bond holders have so far been nettlesome at the negotiating table. Approaching 18 months and there appears to be a stalemate in the negotiation. The Mia Mottley government has been unable to deliver on a promise that the debt restructure transaction would have been closed by now.
Senior members of the BU family have taken umbrage to a recent comment by one of the government’s financial advisors Avinash Persaud. Here is a pertinent quote.
What we have been trying to do is to get the best deal possible for Barbados, which means that it can’t be the quickest deal possible. If you play poker do you fold early? If you don’t need to borrow for four years you have a good hand. So, we are following the right strategy – No backing down
The blogmaster must agree at the idiocy of the statement when viewed through the eyes of a good poker player. A good poker player will fold based on the game situation. It does not have one Rh to do with early or late in the game.
The blogmaster appreciates there is an element of table craft that will be exercised by actors sitting around a negotiating table. One must however critique the judgement of Persaud to feel embolden to have issued such a statement at this juncture in the negotiation.
Despite a bevy of officials recruited by the government with job descriptions to cover finance, communications, public relations and media liaison – the public is left to speculate as to the current state of negotiations with the external debt restructure transaction.
Given the perilous state of the Barbados economy and the time it is taking to close the debt restructure deal with external creditors – the more aware citizens excluding the yard fowl variety – have started to examine the increasing downside risks threatening the Barbados recovery program. The blogmaster counts himself among those who is now very concerned that the high price White Oaks team has been unable to resolve the wedge issues.
It is time to go to plan B.
Do we have a plan B?