PM Issues Warning To FCIB Over Sale Of Antigua Branch


Prime Minister Gaston Browne is warning the Canadian owned FCI Bank that it will not be granted permission to tell its Antigua branch unless it follows the government’s policy.

According to media reports out of Bogotá,  a Colombian interest is negotiating the purchase of several CIBC-FCIB branches in the Caribbean including Antigua and Barbuda.

However, prime minister Gaston Browne is warning the owners of the FCIB that they will receive the same treatment as Scotiabank which failed in its bid to sell the Antigua Branch to interests in Trinidad.

The prime minister told his radio show that like many residents he learned of the sale via the media.

“Now one would think that based on the situation with Scotia Bank that the directors of FCIB in Canada would have known or aught to have known the policy of the Antigua Government,” he said.

The prime minister explained that “our policy is very clear, in the event these multinational banks are going to sell, they have to first give  the first right of refusal to an Antiguan entity.”

Browne who is also finance minister said “just as we took this position with Scotia, the position will be the same with FCIB.”

“So whatever arrangements they are making with whomever, all I have to say to them before they make any arrangements for the Antiguan branch, kindly speak to the Government of Antigua and Barbuda so that we can then speak to our domestic banks to find out if they have an appetite to acquire some or all of the shares of FCIB,” he added.

Browne warned FCIB  that “if they do otherwise then we will take the position that the vesting order will not be issued therefore the transaction will become null and void.”





  1. FCIB is unlike Scotia in that FCIB is is one company incorporated in Barbados that owns all FCIB branches. Sell the shares of the Barbados company and all branches go with it. No need for any vesting order. Scotia branches in the Caribbean are different in that they are all branches of the Scotia Bank Canada Company and so the only way to sell the local Scotia branches is through vesting orders. Of course, Gaston will try to convince the ECCB Monetary Council not to allow the FCIB Antigua sale to go through, but unlike with Scotia, the ECCB cannot approve the sale of FCIB leaving out Antigua as it is a sale of one company that owns all of FCIB. So, it is a sale of all or none. Very different from Scotia where it was possible to sell each island Scotia branch separately. Sorry Gaston, but your leverage is gone on this one with FCIB.

  2. The way the PM is going blocking bank sales, all of the employees of Scotia, FCIB and Royal Bank will soon be unemployed. If ECAB & ACB take over the accounts and customers of these banks, they will certainly not need the employees. I guess that Gaston will pay my monthly mortgage once I am on the bread line?

  3. It is time enough that other countries in the oecs see the sale of these bank as an opportunity to unite and create an oecs regional back which can venture out and open doors in trinidad and barbados and jamaica. We always think we too small to accomplish big things

  4. Scotia Bank,CIBC and Royal Bank of Canada are all leaving the Caribbean.I wondered why?I think I know the reasons.However,I am not speculating.It would all come out in the wash.

    • Notes From A Native Son Of The Rock!”The Afrocentric method considers phenomena to be diverse, dynamic, and in motion and therefore it is necessary for a person to accurately note and record the location of phenomena even in the midst of fluctuations. This means that the investigator must know where he or she is standing in the process.” – Dr. Molefi Asante!

      Scotiabank has been exiting non-core businesses and focusing its international operations on the Pacific Alliance trading bloc of Peru, Mexico, Chile and Columbia, which now accounts for around a quarter of its revenue! The bank made a strategic decision to focus on operations across its international footprint, where it can achieve greater scale! The Caribbean Sale did not even amount to half a million clients!

      Scotiabank has spent the past five years reshaping its wealth management business through acquisitions and divestitures! It’s Small Market Caribbean Banks are just another aspect of its Divestiture!

      The Caribbean Sale was for $123 Million US, a mere Pittance in Scotiabank Global Growth Strategy!

      Scotiabank as part of its growth strategy moved aggressively into Global wealth management which is a distinct business line to serve affluent and ultra-rich clients and is a reflection of the important role that the initiative will play in growing the bank! Scotiabank has spent the last five years reshaping its wealth management business through Canadian acquisitions! The biggest changes came 2018 with the $950 million (US$720 million) purchase of Montreal-based money manager Jarislowksy Fraser Ltd. and the $2.59 billion takeover of MD Financial Management Inc!

      LEST WE REMEMBER! With the 2008/2009 Financial meltdown, Canada’s Bank Of Montreal, Royal Bank and Toronto Dominion since their forays into the large US Market have seen increase in profits for their Shareholders and just as important to their Employees increases in compensation reaching a high of nineteen percent at BMO!

      “For the beloved should not allow me to turn my infantile fantasies into reality: On the contrary, he should help me to go beyond them.” ― Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks!

  5. PM Issues Warning.PM Issues Warning.He seems to be always issuing warnings.When are the people are going to issue a warning to Gaston Browne.By kicking his arse out of Office.

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