Jamaica has paid a heavy price for its botched financial sector
liberalization of the 1990s. Omar Davies, Jamaica's finance
minister, estimates the 1997 banking crisis cost the country
J$125 billion ($2.5 billion). Now, nearly six years later, the
crisis is finally coming to a close.
The Financial Sector Adjustment Company (Finsac), which the
government set up in 1997 to consolidate Jamaica's banks, sold
the Jamaican government's 75% stake in National Commercial Bank
of Jamaica to Canadian fund manager AIC Limited in January for
J$6 billion ($175 million). Patrick Hylton, managing director
of Finsac, says the organization will cease to exist at the end
of this year.
The government has pumped around $411 million into NCB Group
since 1997, spending $285 million to inject liquidity into the
bank and buying its...
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