Two recent media releases indicate that the FNPF Board and Management (at the instigation of the Military Regime) are digging the hole deeper for FNPF, with no accountability to the owners of FNPF, and media censorship stopping all public discussions.
The first is the bad restructuring of the $303 million loan by FNPF to Natadola Bay Resort Limited (NBRL); and the second is the massively risky $200 million loan to help Air Pacific buy 3 Airbuses in 2013, completely contradicting the most recent advice by recent consultants (Promontory) on sound investment policy for FNPF.
Why interest free indefinite loan to NRBL?
The 2011 FNPF Report states that the $303 million loan to NBRL is being restructured so that while $100 million will draw an interest of 8% pa, the remaining $203 million will become an indefinite loan, and interest free.
FNPF will effectively in its accounts, give a $16 million subsidy annually to NBRL- some 40% of the total value of all the pensions currently being paid annually.
This is terrible accounting practice for three reasons.
First, any decent accountant or economist would advise that all transactions between a parent company and a subsidiary should be done at “arms length” with subsidiaries being charged the same interest rate that other borrowers are being charged.
To convert $203 millions into an interest free loan will artificially increase the apparent profitability of the subsidiary (NBRL), while reducing the apparent performance of the rest of FNPF.
Second, by not charging interest on the large loan, NBRL is being given no incentive to repay the loan as soon as possible- especially when it is “indefinite”.
Third, if in future, this Military Regime’s forced takeover of private assets at Natadola and vested in NBRL by Military Decree is legally and successfully challenged, then the assets of NBRL will become logical targets for litigants.
The books for NBRL should therefore show its true worth- not artificially inflated through interest rate subsidies given by FNPF, which may then be claimed in future by legitimate litigants.
Which financial institution in the world, gives an interest-free indefinite loan like this? Who dreamt up this scheme? Who in FNPF management agreed to go along with this? Why would the unelected, illegal FNPF Board Members agree to this subterfuge to show the NBRL in a better light. Is it to allow more “write-backs” on asset value of this bad investment?
Pie-in-the-sky loan to Air Pacific
Another far more dismaying media announcement has been the $200 million loan by FNPF to Air Pacific.
If the current management at Air Pacific know what they are doing this loan may turn out OK for FNPF.
Why are FNPF lending US$98 million dollars to Qantas?, has Qantas agreed to the terms of the “Loan”? and when will they and the Fiji Government repay the principle which initially stands at US$200 Million Dollars of Provident Fund Members money. Currently Air Pacific are operating at loss and cannot afford to pay the interest on this sum, yet the High Flying Fast Talking Dave Pflieger who was unable to raise the money from the commercial banks in Fiji ( who just happen to have a large surplus of deposits ) has received the full assistance of his friend Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum in filching the money from the FNPF coffers, money which belongs to the members and which the Governments only responsibility is to ensure the fund is managed in a proper manner.. Yet this government like previous governments persists in treating it like their personal honey pot (Which is sad, because many of us expected better from Frank)
The members now know why Aisake Taito and the board have been bleating for the past six months on the need to deprive the existing pensioners of up to 64% of their monthly pension and appear to have the full support of Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum who will have the FNPF act amended to facilitate this travesty.
The government receives in excess of $65 million dollars each year in International passenger departure taxes, after deducting the $20+ million given to the tourist industry the balance of $45+ million a year could be paid into the FNPF, as repayment of this Air Pacific /Qantas loan… but we all know it will not be, in fact FNPF will be lucky if it receives the interest which Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says is substantial, but strangely declines to say how much substantial equates to, and of course HFFT Dave Pflieger’s lips are sealed. If it was not so serious one would think it a comedy act, it is just so farcical.
When the FNPF pensioners ask how they will afford the necessities of life if their pensions are reduced by FNPF which loaned Air Pacific the $200 million to buy these new aircraft, HFFT David Pfligger’s and Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum’s response would probably be, like Marie Antoinette’s.. ‘let them eat cake‘.
One quick question for HFFT Dave Pflieger “Why did you fly from New Zealand to Fiji on Air New Zealand last week, when there was an Air Pacific flight 30 minutes later”? What happened to supporting the world’s friendliest airline???
Another quick question for HFFT Dave, who gets paid the Airbus commission?, anyone who has followed the Brian Mulroney saga knows that they pay commissions.Could this be why these aircraft were not purchased via Qantas?
The Attorney General, on yet another ego trip, is comparing Fiji to Singapore, totally disregarding the fact that Singapore has a parliament which decides such things.
FNPF members can be forgiven for thinking that Fiji is definitely now in the realm of nutter-land. Clearly, Air Pacific, which is currently in a loss situation and is attempting to spend its way out using FNPF members money, is in serious danger of going belly up. As a result our agricultural produce will rot in the warehouses while we wait for the ships to take them away; and by the time FNPF wakes up to realise that yet another of its investments had gone awry, Pflieger the high flying bird and his little flock will have flown far away. It is a great pity that Frank did not give the Aviation Ministry to the sensible, down to earth, Colonel Mason Smith.
Members please take heed this is FNPF money, YOUR MONEY
Fiji National Provident Fund Investments Limited (FIL) incorporated a total capital utilisation of $141 million for investments in the country says chief executive Aisake Taito.
The investments were for the financial year end 30 June, 2011.
Taito said some of the investments carried out by the FIL, a fully owned subsidiary of the Fiji National Provident (FNPF), were rehabilitated under the funds reforms programme including the Natadola Project, Grand Pacific Hotel (GPH) and some distressed loans.
The subsidiary companies for FIL include Natadola Bay Resort Limited, Natadola Land Holdings, FNPF Hotel Resorts Limited, Grand Pacific Hotel Limited, Dareton Limited and Penina Limited.
Grey Power says:
For Penina Ltd, read Tappoos, we remember the fiasco and the report given by Ernst & Young, relating to this loan, that was quickly covered up by instructions of a leading government minister, even though it was the FNPF members money and we had the right to be kept informed. No doubt another inquiry would establish that Penina is included in the distressed loans made by FNPF management. This used to be called throwing good money after bad. It is now called Assisting Friends of the Minister.
It boils down to or simmers down to DISTRESS for the FNPF Members, because it is our savings that are being pillaged by a group of immoral and arrogant individuals, who believe they are not accountable to anyone, least of all the people the money belongs to.
Export in all its forms is the lifeblood of any nation, for us in Fiji it is of growing importance in the area of farm produce, fish, garments etc.
In particular in encouraging utilization of fallow land for cash crops and exports of same, it is essential that the current air cargo facilities are not reduced.
In fact anyone with vision would be planning for a long term increase, and the concerns expressed by the Minister for Agriculture, growers, manufactures and freight companies are understandable.
Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum as the Minister responsible for Air Pacific must ensure that the haste of short term action to return the airline to profit, does not result in long term damage to the nation. The question is will he hear the other voices over the fast talking Dave Pflieger?, who as we recall terminated air services to many of Fiji’s outer Islands for a quick cash flow saving.
I walked along some forgotten shore.
Coming the other way
a smiling boy.
It was me.
‘Who are you old man?’ he said
I dare not tell him, all I could say was
Madrid 14 September 1973 by Spike Milligan.
Despite having been constantly under the spotlight for undertaking major reforms this year, Fiji’s only superannuation fund has recorded a significant 16 per cent increase in the net operating surplus for 2011.
The Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) yesterday announced a net operating surplus of $242.6 million for the financial year ended June 30, 2011 compared to $209.5m in 2010.
A major contributor to this considerable increase was growth in investment income which grew steadily from $221.7m in 2010 to $240.4m in 2011 representing a 6.8 per cent return on investments.
Can you Aisake Taito, tell us where in the recommendations that have been received in the last 30 years from the World Bank, ILO, Blaxland and other consultants, it states or recommends that the contracts of existing pensioners should be breached, voided or in any way corrupted by FNPF Management and Board ?
Perhaps Mr Hasmukh Patel can tell us through our comments column, why the FEA need to increase the security deposits of customers who have never defaulted, given the $8.4 million dollar net profit last year and the potential $12+ million dollar profit this year. Or is it just for cash flow to make the bonus payments?