Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 26th 2014 Contents A19
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West Indian Tobacco record-
ed a profit before tax of $556.3
million for the year ended 31
December 2013, an increase of
16.8 per cent over the previous
year. Profit after tax of $411 mil-
lion, reflects an increase of 17.4
per cent over 2012, recently
published financial reports
"The management and staff
of West Indian Tobacco are to
be complimented for the com-
pany s performance," chairman
Anthony E. Phillip said.
He said directors will recom-
mend to shareholders for
approval, a final dividend of $1.61
per share at the annual meeting
on April 4. "This, when added
to the interim dividends of $2.93,
will result in a total dividend of
$4.54 per share for 2013.
"If approved, the final dividend
will be paid on April 29, 2014
,to shareholders of record at the
close of business on April 16,
2014. The Register of Sharehold-
ers will be closed on April 17 and
22 April, 2014," Phillip said.
West Indian Tobacco records $556.3m after tax profit
Scotiabank T&T has recorded
$144.3 million net income for the
first quarter of 2014, a figure
managing director Anya M.
Schnoor says is an indication that
this will be another solid financial
year for the bank.
Schnoor told the bank s annual
general meeting at Paria Suites,
La Romain, that the figure was a
1.6 per cent increase over the same
period last year. It follows the
bank s after tax net income of
$561.2 million at the end of 2013,
which Schnoor said was an
increase of $15.6 million or 2.9 per
cent over the same period last
The bank s total assets at the
end of the 2013 stood at $19.5
billon, an increase of 10.2 per cent
or $1.8 billion over the comparative
period in 2012.
Schnoor said Scotiabank, which
celebrates its 60th anniversary this
year, is hopeful that the current
fiscal climate will continue since
T&T s economy is showing sta-
bility. She later told reporters: "We
are expecting the economy to con-
tinue to show positive growth and
this will translate into enhanced
business and consumer confi-
dence. If the economy continues
to pick up, we should see our loan
growth picking up. But in the
absence of loan growth or slow
loan growth what we have done
is really focus on diversifying our
company and we are expanding
our new products in other areas
such as insurance and wealth."
Schnoor said the bank also per-
formed well "in the area of capital
markets, where we are looking."
Scotiabank Insurance sold
10,000 new policies, a record per-
formance for that subsidiary. In
addition, the bank is helping busi-
nesses do transactions for financ-
ing expansion and providing advi-
sory services. This, she said, is an
area where the bank has spent
time building capability internal-
ly.Scotiabank chairman Sylvia D.
Chrominska told the AGM: "We
are strong and stable and ready
to support our customers through
the economic challenges of today,
as well as those that may come
in the days ahead."
She said the bank is committed
to T&T and the Caribbean.
Commenting on the economy,
Chrominska said "growth seems
to be picking up, albeit slowly."
She added: "While output from
the energy sector has moderated,
non-energy output has increased,
a clear benefit of economic diver-
sity. Over the next year we expect
the economy to continue to grow
at a moderate pace, which will
provide the needed stability for
our bank to continue to expand
In commemoration of the
bank s anniversary Chrominska
said Scotiabank will disburse more
than $60,000 in funding to var-
ious community projects.
Shareholders praised the bank
for holding the AGM in South
Trinidad for the first time.
Scotiabank net income
increase to $144.3m RAPHAEL JOHN-LALL
The heavy burden of debt in most
Caribbean countries can have a neg-
ative effect on the region, Alberto
Duran, Director of Trade of the Asso-
ciation of Caribbean States (ACS) has
He said there are "clear signs of
potential fiscal insolvency and an exces-
sive debt situation."
Duran said: "The simple average of
the public debt ratio to Gross Domestic
Product (GDP) in the Caribbean for 14
countries in the IMF database for the
period 1999-2011 was 72.32 per cent,
and in 2011 this indicator reached 74.35
per cent. This continues to have a sig-
nificant impact on growth and devel-
opment in many countries. In addition
to this, we must add the global financial
crisis which further worsened the sit-
uation of these countries."
Duran, who spoke on behalf of ACS
Secretary General Alfonso Múnera at
a meeting of the Economic System of
Latin America (SELA) in Port-of-Spain,
said some attempts have been made
by regional countries to reduce their
debts but it has not had much impact.
"Some countries have made several
attempts to reduce their respective
debts, particularly through restructuring
and fiscal consolidation. However, initial
gains have been smaller or were not
sustainable due to the lack of compre-
hensive reforms to complement the
efforts of adjustment," he said.
Duran warned of a fiscal crisis if the
debt burden is not reduced.
"Easing the burden of the debt turns
out to be fundamental, so it is important
for Caribbean society to move forward.
We have to face the imminent threat
of a fiscal crisis, the large costs of debt
in the economy, the impact on invest-
ment of the private sector s foreign
direct investment (FDI) and unsustain-
able economic growth. In other words,
the public debt has negative effects on
economic activity. Thus the debt can
become a brake on economic growth.
"For these reasons, we want to
address the issue of public debt and
fiscal sustainability from a compre-
hensive perspective. We applaud the
efforts of the SELA for the carrying
out this work, through the consultant s
research, Mr Victor Olivo, who pro-
duced a document that will be our
effective guide throughout our delib-
erations," Duran said.
ACS official: Caribbean
debt can cause fiscal crisis
Anya M Schoor, left, managing director of Scotiabank T&T Limited, at the head table with Adrian Lezama, assistant general manager, Finance, Bruce Bowen, director, George Janoura, deputy
chairman, and Wendy Far Thompson, director, at the 44th annual meeting of shareholders yesterday at Paria Suites, La Romain. PHOTO:TONY HOWELL
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