No appetite for BPL debt

No appetite for BPL debt
BPL Clifton Pier plant (file photo)

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) is the “single biggest drag” on the Bahamian economy, a top insurance executive said yesterday,

Anthony Ferguson, CFAL’s founder and president argued there was “no appetite” for BPL’s rate reduction bond (RRB) offer which was intended to refinance the utility’s legacy debt.

Ferguson yesterday also warned that the financial services sector which he estimated has seen a 75 percent decline since 200 will see further contraction in the coming months.

CFAL president Anthony Ferguson

“From where I sit I fully expect other 5-7 Swiss Banks operating here to not be here in the next 24 months. I think there is a serious opportunity in the Fintech and investment side of the business.”

Ferguson was speaking during a CFA Bahamas Society webinar yesterday.

“It’s not that (BPL) wanted to delay it or COVID- 19 caused the delay, there was no appetite,” Ferguson said.

“Government is still controlling it so it’s still poorly managed, has been poorly managed and will continue to be poorly managed. Until you can give investors confidence that the management has the capacity to manage in an efficient manner with a reduction in the cost of generating electricity the appetite for BPL’s debt will continue to be extremely low save for National Insurance and government controlled entities.”

Ferguson added: “There is no appetite for BPL debt and until government is prepared to make some tough decisions in terms of getting out of management it will remain that way.”