The Central Bank of The Bahamas - Latest News - https://www.centralbankbahamas.comLatest NewsThyme Online Feeder 1.0en-usBahamas Registered Stock Initial Public Offering Calendarhttps://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16668Bahamas Registered Stock Initial Public Offering Calendar https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16668Central Bank of the Bahamas to host the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers' Federation Power Breakfast - February 2020https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16667The Central Bank of The Bahamas will host the first Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers'Federation Power Breakfast of the year, on Wednesday, 12th February 2020. Under the theme, "PROJECT SAND DOLLAR: A Bahamas Payments System Modernisation Initiative". This breakfast will provide many members of the Bahamian business community with a first look at Sand Dollar. Local money transfer businesses (MTBs) and payment service providers (PSPs) will also be invited to set up demonstration kiosks at the breakfast, featuring their digital payment solutions. The Bank introduced a digital version of the Bahamian dollar on Friday, 27th December 2019, with a pilot phase in the Exumas that will extend to the Abacos during the first quarter of 2020. This initiative has acquired the name Project Sand Dollar, with the Sand Dollar also being the name assigned to the central bank digital currency (CBDC); and is a continuation of the Bahamian Payments System Modernization Initiative (PSMI), which began in the early 2000s. The Bahamian PSMI targets improved outcomes for financial inclusion and access, making the domestic payments system more efficient and non-discriminatory in access to financial services. The project has the support of the financial community, which welcomes the opportunity for financial inclusion of the unbanked and underbanked residents that Sand Dollar will provide. The authorised financial institutions (AFIs) currently participating in the pilot include clearing banks, MTBs and PSPs. As the pilot expands to the Abacos, additional AFIs are expected to be onboarded. Initial pilot projections of 500 participants have exceeded expectations. With enrolment currently at 1,200, the Exuma pilot is quickly approaching its maximum; however, the demand for Sand Dollar continues to show strong growth. At last count, there was an excess of 1,800+ requests from the Exuma chain. The Sand Dollar wallet is available for download in the Google Play and Apple stores, under the name "Sand Dollar". The app is free and does not require any membership fees. However, for the duration of the pilot, the app can only be configured to work after enrolment through a participating financial institution. The Sand Dollar app is expected to give way to the tailored front-end experience of the individual AFIs. Therefore, those enrolling in Sand Dollar need to consider the long-term relationship they intend to maintain with their selected financial services provider. Bahamian residents and visitors are encouraged to download the Project Sand Dollar paper published on the Central Bank's website at www.centralbankbahamas.com/publications.php?cmd=view&id=17018. Additionally, the public should continue to dialogue with the Bank through their preferred method. As the website is developed, regular project updates are available on the Sand Dollar social media feeds. Sand Dollar contact information and social media links are accessible at www.sanddollar.bs. https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16667Remarks by Governor Rolle at the Bahamas Business Outlook on "Towards a Financial Sector Disaster Recovery Plan for The Bahamas"https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16666

Towards a Financial Sector Disaster Recovery Plan for The Bahamas

John Rolle Governor*
*As prepared for Delivery.

Bahamas Business Outlook
16 January 2020

Introduction

It is a pleasure to speak at this 29th session of Bahamas Business Outlook. I am continuing with a presentation that was given in Exuma, just weeks after Hurricane Dorian, when our attention to disaster recovery and resilience in the financial sector gained new traction. My focus today is on how the domestic financial sector should be viewed as a supportive force in supporting national recoveries for natural disasters. This ties into policies to sustain and enhance the collective strength of the balance sheets of deposit-taking institutions; reinforcing the role that foreign exchange buffers provide for recoveries and boosting the resilience of household balance sheets. As the public finances improve, so will resiliency prospects, as would initiatives to reduce disaster risk exposures for tourism assets. A central bank digital currency, as encapsulated in the Project Sand Dollar initiative will also promote the resilience most vital in restoring the access and connectivity to financial services after disasters strike. For further reading please view the download.
https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16666
Bahamas Registered Stock Secondary Market Prices January 2020https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16665Bahamas Registered Stock Secondary Market Prices January 2020https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16665Bahamas Registered Stock Initial Public Offering January 2020https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16664

PROSPECTUS

THE GOVERNMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF THE BAHAMAS
BAHAMAS REGISTERED STOCK 2023,2025,2027,2030,2040 AND 2050 ISSUE OF B$30,600,000
ISSUED UNDER THE BAHAMAS REGISTERED STOCK ACT
Prospectus Date: January 03, 2020

Issuer: Bahamas Government Open Date: January 13, 2020 (9:30 a.m.)
Registrar: Central Bank of The Bahamas Close Date: January 15, 2020 (3:00 p.m.)
Organizer: Central Bank of The Bahamas Settlement: January 17, 2020
First Int Pmt: July 17, 2020
Calendar: Actual/365
The Central Bank of The Bahamas will not accept applications after 3:00 p.m. each day.
Security ID Issue Size (B$) Unit Share (B$) Tenor (Years) Interest (Fixed) Maturity Interest Payment
BGR134023 500,000.00 100 3 3.00% January 17, 2023 Semi-annual
BGR134025 500,000.00 100 5 3.50% January 17, 2025 Semi-annual
BGR134027 600,000.00 100 7 4.15% January 17, 2027 Semi-annual
BGR134030 2,000,000.00 100 10 4.85% January 17, 2030 Semi-annual
BGR134040 15,000,000.00 100 20 5.35% January 17, 2040 Semi-annual
BGR134050 12,000,000.00 100 30 5.69% January 17, 2050 Semi-annual
30,600,000.00

Payments: Subscription amounts should be made electronically or via bank draft, payable to the Central Bank of The Bahamas only. CASH PAYMENTS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.
Requirements: (1) Bahamian E-Passport; or (2) NIB Smart Card paired with one of the following: Bahamian Driver's License, National Identity Card, Permanent Residence Permit, other National Passport, or Spousal Permit. New Business customers must present a list of its authorized signatories along with Memorandum/Articles of Association.
Refunds: Refunds will be made within three business days following the settlement date. No interest will be paid on amounts refunded.
Certificates: Results will be made available on the Central Bank's website, and successful applicants can collect their certificates from the Central Bank 30 calendar days following settlement.
Allocation: Securities will be awarded in accordance with the Central Bank's priority level allocation process, with priority given to individual applications in amounts up to $250,000. All other applications-individuals greater than $250,000 and institutions-will be classified as Priority Level 2 and may result in a proration in the event of an oversubscription.
Application forms may be obtained from the Central Bank of The Bahamas' offices in Nassau and Freeport or from the Central Bank's website at www.centralbankbahamas.com. Additional details are also available on the website.
https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16664
REMINDER: Central Bank Decommissioning One Cent Coin This Monthhttps://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16663

REMINDER:

In January 2020, the Central Bank will cease the issuance of the one cent coin, and begin a process of removing the coin from circulation. Decommissioning as legal tender would occur on 31st December 2020. For the remainder of 2020, the Central Bank would embark upon a programme to redeem supplies of the one cent coin in active circulation. A further 6-month window is authorised, during which the public will still be able to redeem the coins but not spend them. https://www.centralbankbahamas.com/news.php?id=16616&cmd=view
https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16663
Results of Treasury Tender December 2019https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16661Results of Treasury Tender December 2019https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16661PROJECT SANDDOLLAR: A Bahamian Payments Systems Modernization Initiativehttps://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16660The Central Bank will introduce a digital version of the Bahamian dollar, starting with a pilot phase in Exuma in December 2019, and extending in the first half of 2020 to Abaco. This initiative has acquired the name Project Sand Dollar, with the sand dollar also being the name assigned to the proposed central bank digital currency (CBDC). This is a continuation of the Bahamian Payments System Modernization Initiative (PSMI), which began in the early 2000s. The Bahamian PSMI targets improved outcomes for financial inclusion and access, making the domestic payments system more efficient and non-discriminatory in access to financial services. Although average measures of financial development and access in The Bahamas are high by international standards, pockets of the population are excluded because of the remoteness of some communities outside of the cost effective reach of physical banking services. More onerous customer due diligence standards for AML/CFT international tax compliance have also resulted in forms of exclusion, including more recent responses to tighter "know your customer" (KYC) systems introduced to preserve international correspondent banking relationships. As recent policy and regulatory reforms have begun to tackle these barriers, the Central Bank is intent on accelerating payments system reform, admitting new categories of financial services providers and using the digital payments infrastructure to make the supply of traditional banking services accessible to all segments of the population. Recent surveys document that as part of a financial literacy campaign, there is room to improve both knowledge and awareness of financial products and responsible financial behavior. Opportunities also exist to reduce transaction costs for businesses and consumers. Feedback from Exuma, show a high penetration of mobile phone usage, and a likelihood that a higher share of the population would be willing to use digital financial services including electronic payments. The public though will need more assurances around the safety of conducting online transactions. The digital currency design and public education will tackle these issues. Most of the benefits of introducing a digital currency are still unquantifiable. However, they include a potential suppression of economic costs associated with cash usage, and benefits to the Government from improved expenditure and tax administration systems. It is expected that the Government, as participant and user, would be a strong promoter of digital payments adoption, alongside non-bank payment services providers as the initial lead intermediaries in this space. As the pilot progresses in Exuma, the Central Bank will simultaneously promote the development of new regulations for the digital currency, and strengthen consumer protection, especially around data protection standards. The Bank will also advance reforms to permit direct participation of non-banks in the domestic payments system. Early passage of the new Central Bank of The Bahamas Bill will support the creation of some regulations, while additional reforms will be possible under the existing Payment Systems Act. https://www.centralbankbahamas.com/publications.php?cmd=view&id=17018https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16660Monthly Economic and Financial Developments, November 2019https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16659

Domestic Economic Developments

Overview

Economic indicators suggest that domestic output maintained its upward, albeit modest, trajectory over the review period. In particular, tourism output continued to be supported by activity in the New Providence market, and the Family Islands unaffected by the major storm. Further, construction sector output was bolstered by ongoing foreign investment-led projects and, to a lesser extent, post-hurricane rebuilding. In terms of prices, the domestic inflation rate firmed during the twelve months to September, although slowing from the preceding month. Monetary sector developments featured a buildup in both banking sector liquidity and external reserves, amid accelerated gains in Bahamian dollar deposits and a reduction in domestic credit.

Real Sector

Tourism

Indications are that tourism activity was mildly positive during the review period, with data from the Nassau Airport Development Company Ltd. (NAD) revealing a 0.8% gain in total departures during November, slowing significantly from the 15.7% growth recorded during the same period in 2018. Precisely, the U.S. component edged up by 0.4%, relative to a 15.5% growth in the previous year. Further, the non-U.S. international segment firmed by 2.7% vis-a-vis an increase of 16.8% in the prior year. Anchored by gains in previous months, total foreign departures rose by 13.1% during the eleven months to November, slightly less than the 14.0% growth a year earlier. In particular, U.S traffic rose by 14.3%, following the 13.2% increase in 2018; while, the non-U.S. international component grew by 5.9%, compared to an 18.6% expansion a year earlier. Meanwhile, analysis over a longer period showed that airport traffic continued to exceed recession records.

Prices

In price developments, the domestic inflation rate, as measured by the All Bahamas Retail Price Index, firmed by 81 basis points to 2.79%, during the twelve months to September. A disaggregation by category revealed that following reductions in 2018, the average prices for furnishing, household equipment & maintenance, and clothing & footwear increased by 6.0% and by 1.4%, respectively. Further, the rate of inflation accelerated for transport (9.43%), restaurants & hotels (5.16%), alcoholic beverages, tobacco & narcotics (4.19%), and health (3.26%). In contrast, the rise in average prices slowed for food & non-alcoholic beverages and housing, water gas electricity & other fuels. Also, average costs declined for communication, education and recreation & culture. For full-text reading, please download the attached document.
https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16659
Results Bahamas Registered Stock Initial Public Offering - December 2019https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16658Central Bank of The Bahamas facilitated a $32,500,000 Initial Public Offering of Bahamas Registered Stocks on behalf of the Government of The Bahamas. The offering, which closed on December 11, 2019, was fully subscribed. Please view the download for further reading. https://www.centralbankbahamas.com?cmd=view&id=16658