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Chong Chieng Jen's Blog

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Chong Chieng Jen's Blog


砂政府借岸外贷款,还高利息,为逃避砂州议会监督。

Posted: 27 Nov 2015 05:02 PM PST

28-11-2015
民主行动党古晋市国会议员兼哥打圣淘沙州议员张健仁抨击砂州政府,借岸外贷款,还高利息,为了逃避砂州州议会的监督。
也是砂州行动党主席的张健仁表示,他在今年4月州议会提呈的其中一个问题,有关砂州政府到底还欠多少岸外贷款的钱,有关的利息是多少及这些贷款的钱到底如何使用。这道问题首席部长没有回答,直到张氏悾言要今届议会动议,首席部长才于今年11月26日才给予答案。
张氏透露,这答案不只暴露砂州政府欠了巨额岸外贷款,更甚的是,这些贷款的利息数额,搞得令人咂舌。
以下是该答案所列出的,砂州政府介于2015年底,还欠的岸外贷款数额和利息:
1. Sarawak Capital Incorporated 的债卷,2026年到期。本金(俗称'母钱')欠1亿6500万美元,尚欠利息数额1亿4896万美元。
2. Equisar International Incorporated的债卷,2026年到期。本金欠5亿3350万美元,尚欠利息数额5亿5675万美元。
3. SSG Resources Ltd Notes的债卷,2022年到期。本金欠5亿6000万美元,尚欠利息数额2亿3800万美元。
张氏指出,砂州政府介于2015年底,外债总数是22亿221万美元,以目前1美元兑4.2令吉的兑换率,砂州政府的外债是约92亿5000万令吉,其中约55%是利息和令吉下跌的亏损。
他说,虽然首席部长的回答企图给予理由解释为何砂州政府要借岸外贷款,但是,这些解释只是欲盖弥彰,越描越黑,更加肯定我所怀疑的,有关砂州政府这些岸外贷款之处。
砂州政府的岸外贷款利息太高
张氏表示,政府举债借岸外贷款是非常普通的一个政府筹资的方式。但是,在这方面,砂州政府的岸外贷款所不寻常的是,它的这些贷款的利息太高了。
他指出,根据这答案所透露的,砂州政府的这些贷款平均利息高过每年6%。这是比普通马来西亚政府债卷所付的利息,高出约40%。
"砂州政府自夸有270亿令吉的储备金。这些储备金在银行所能赚取的利息最多也是介于2 – 3%利息。为何政府把钱放在银行赚那2 – 3%的利息,但同时却还超过6%的利息借岸外贷款? 这不合逻辑。"
张氏质问,这些债卷的持有者是谁?这些债卷持有者是否与砂州国阵那些在海外存有很多钱的领袖有关系?为何砂州政府要还如此高的利息去借钱?
岸外贷款资金流动,不受州议会监督
张氏指出,首长的答案中也透露,这些岸外贷款所借的钱,是用在"策略性的投资和基建发展"。
张氏说,这种答案根本就是掩饰性答案。 这显示,砂州政府根本就是在借这岸外贷款的管道,逃避砂州议会的监督和部长的问责责任。
他说,当州政府要从砂州政府的统一户口拨款进行任何发展计划,它必须在州议会通过每年度的财政预算案或附加财政法案寻求议会的通过。在这些预算案或附加法案的辩论中,部长们就必须回答议员们对一些工程计划的质问。
"但是,如果这些发展计划是由岸外贷款所筹资的钱资付,那部长就无需在议会针对这些工程给予交代。部长只需向州议会交代说,钱是拨出还债卷就可了事了。至于债卷的钱如何使用,则部长们就无需向州议会交代。"
张氏质问,这些岸外贷款所筹得的钱,到底还给谁?钱是拿来做什么工程?这些工程是否有经过公开招标方式批出?这些工程是否有超支,有'干捞'成分?目前这些工程的进展如何?
张氏说,虽然在法律上,因为这是经由岸外贷款所支付的工程,部长们没有责任在州议会回答这些问题,但是,既然阿德南口口声声要更透明的施政,在民主问责的精神和原则上,阿德南有义务交代清楚这些问题。

State Government Uses Off-shore Loan to By-pass Scrutiny by DUN

Posted: 27 Nov 2015 05:00 PM PST

28-11-2015
State Government Uses Off-shore Loan to By-pass Scrutiny by DUN
Over the last 10 years, the Sarawak Government has been engaging in off-shore loans to circumvent the scrutiny of Dewan UndanganNegeri on a major portion of its expenditure. For that, it is paying obscenely high interest in US dollar.
The State Government had been reluctant to disclose the amount of off-shore loans taken up by its subsidiary companies. I submitted the question before the April 2015 DUN sitting began and only received the answer to it on 26-11-2015, after I threatened to move a motion against the Chief Minister for failure to provide answers to my question.
The answer to my question provided by the Chief Minister reveals a large amount of foreign debt owed by the State Government. What is more shocking is the extremely high interest rates that the State Government is paying for these loans.
The followings are the particulars of the off-shore Loans owed by the State Government as at end of Financial Year 2015:
1. Sarawak Capital Incorporated Bond due in 2026. Principal amount still owing is US$165.0 million and balance of interest owing is US$148.96 million.
2. Equisar International Incorporated Notes due in 2026. Principal amount still owing is US$533.5 million and balance of interest owing is US$556.75 million
3. SSG Resources Ltd Notes due in 2022. Principal amount still owing is US$560.0 million and balance of interest still owing is US$238.00 million
In total, the State Government had a US2,202.21 million of foreign debt. With the present exchange rate of 1US$ to RM4.2, that is a whooping RM9.25 billion of foreign debt, 55% of which are for interest payment and forex losses.
In the answer provided, the Chief Minister tried to justify these borrowing but failed miserably. It only confirms my suspicion that there are great improprieties in these off-shore loans taken up by the State Government.
It is normal for Government to seek finance from the capital market (ie. to borrow), however, what is not normal in these loans are the extremely high interest payable by the State Government on these loans. On average, the State Government is paying more than 6% p.a. on these loans. That is 40% more than the average interest paid on sovereign loans taken up byMalaysia Government at the relevant times.
The State Government boasts of having RM27 billion reserves. These reserves, being fixed deposits, are at most earning 2 – 3% p.a. interest. Why borrow and pay interest at more than 6% p.a. when we have the money sitting in the bank earning 2 – 3% interest only? It doesn't make sensible financial sense.
Who are the bond-holders? Are those bondholders someone related to the top BN leaders with a lot of money overseas? Why is the State Government paying so much interest on these loans?
The second impropriety of using these off-shore loans "for strategic investment and infrastructure development" is that it shields the use of fund from the scrutiny of the DUN and that the Ministers can then not be accountable to the DUN for the use of the money.
When fund is paid out from the consolidated account of the State Government, it is done through the DUN in the annual budgets and supplementary budgets. There and then, all items of the development have to be listed and the ministers have to be answerable to the ADUNs on questions raised in respect of the items listed under the budgets.
However, when the money is paid out from these off-shore loan, no questions can be asked. The Minister simply has to tell the DUN that the money is paid to repay the loan. As such, the answer that I received is as vague as can be, ie. a general statement "for strategic investment and infrastructure development".
To whom the proceeds of these off-shore loans were paid? What are the projects involved? Whether any open tender being called for the award of these projects? Are these projects over-priced? How is the progress of these projects?
By financing these so-called "projects" through these off-shore loans, the Government needs not be answerable in DUN for the above questions.
However, if Adenan truly walk the talk, we call on him to give a full detail of the spending of these off-shore loans instead of hiding the details with general statements.

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