Government makes move to gain controlling interest in ECAB

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By Carl Joseph

 In what may be considered a power play, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda (GOAB) may be seeking to use the pending acquisition of Scotiabank Antigua by the Eastern Caribbean Amalgamated Bank (ECAB) as leverage to attain controlling interest in the regionally-owed ECAB.

Cabinet spokesman, Minister Melford Nicholas, told the press on Thursday that the Cabinet has “asked the other shareholders in ECAB to approve the conversion of its preference shares to [ordinary] shares such that the government’s position in ECAB would be enhanced as well”.

ECAB’s current shareholders are the Antigua Commercial Bank, Eastern Caribbean Financial Holding Company, National Bank of Dominica, St Kitts Nevis Anguilla National Bank, Bank of St Vincent and the Grenadines, and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda.

The GOAB would need the consent of the other shareholders in order for their preference shares to be converted to ordinary shares.

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