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NEW YORK, N.Y. – NEW YORK — Standard & Poor’s downgrades its rating on Spain’s debt by two notches, leaving it on the cusp of junk status. A grinding recession, high unemployment and social unrest are limiting the government’s options for stemming the country’s financial crisis, S&P says.The credit-rating agency now rates debt issued by Spain BBB-, its lowest investment-grade status. It had been BBB+.Also on Wednesday, S&P also assigned a negative outlook to the rating, saying it could be further downgraded if Spain’s economic conditions erode further.“Overall, against the backdrop of a deepening economic recession, we believe that the government’s resolve will be repeatedly tested by domestic constituencies that are being adversely affected by its policies,” S&P said.It also cited difficulty in predicting the extent to which other countries in the 17-nation eurozone would come to Spain’s aid. It had previously assumed a key European bailout fund would help recapitalize the country’s shaky banks without piling more debt on the central government in Madrid. But now any recapitalization plan will likely add more debt, S&P said.Investors are worried that Spanish banks could collapse under the weight of an imploding real-estate market.Tensions between Spain’s indebted regional governments and the central government were also cited by S&P for its downgrade.S&P estimates Spain’s economy will contract by 1.8 per cent in 2012 and another 1.4 per cent in 2013. Spanish unemployment is near 25 per cent.Last month, the European Central Bank agreed to buy unlimited amounts of debt by struggling European countries like Spain to help lower their borrowing costs. But the governments first need to apply for bailout.Spain has not applied for a bailout yet. Instead, the government has introduced a series of austerity and labour measures in a bid to bring down its deficit and convince investors it can manage its finances without outside help.The interest rate, or yield, on 10-year Spanish bonds was 5.78 per cent on Wednesday, near a six-month low. That was down from a July 24 peak of 7.54 per cent, near the level that forced Greece, Portugal and Ireland to seek international bailouts. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by News Staff Posted Oct 11, 2012 1:26 am MDT S&P downgrades Spain’s credit rating 2 notches to lowest investment-grade level read more


The highly controversial contract between the Georgetown Mayor and City Council (M&CC) and the parking meter company, Smart City Solutions (SCS), can only be terminated through arbitration.According to the contract, if in any event a dispute arises over the terms of the agreement and there is need for it to be terminated, it must be done through arbitration by the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) in Miami, Florida.The contract states under the “Dispute Resolution” clause that “the Parties expressly declare that any disputes arising in connection with the interpretation, performance, breach and termination of this Agreement shall be settled through arbitration.”It specified that the arbitration must be administered through the ICDR in accordance with the applicable rules of the Arbitration Committee of the International Business Council.There has been much resistance against the Parking Meter Project since the idea was flouted by the City Council.Since its implementation, that resistance has grown into a mass movement calling for the initiative to be shelved and the contract which was signed in total secrecy to be scrapped.But it appears that the parking meter company has taken all precautionary steps to ensure it is protected in any turn of events regarding the initiative.The contract stipulates that City Hall must be liable for any expenses incurred by the company as a result of a third party action.Among the shocking clauses in the contract are: the fact that the company can extend the duration of the 49-year agreement for an additional 49 years under the same terms of the current agreement, subject to the approval of City Hall; the company was given the option to operate in Guyana for almost one century; the contract’s ‘terror clause’ protects Smart City Solutions, as it includes a clause intended to scare the Mayor and City Council over the prospect of terminating the agreement.Hundreds continue to protest against the controversial parking metersShould the company be ordered by any court to take any form of action, which will incur expenses, then these will become the burden on the City Council.The reimbursement for any loss suffered as a result of third party action is titled “Indemnification.”The section reads, “The city shall indemnify the Concessionaire against all liabilities, costs, expenses, damages and losses including, but not limited to any direct, indirect or consequential losses, loss of profit, loss of reputation and all interest, penalties and legal costs and all other professional costs and expenses suffered or incurred by the Concessionaire.”The contract also provides for the Company to be reimbursed if any claim, action, motion, petition, summons, writ or other proceeding whatsoever made against the Town Clerk, the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown which results in the delay in the performance or frustration of this agreement.Additionally, if such payment due from the City is subject to tax (whether by way of direct assessment or withholding at its source), the company shall be entitled to receive from the city such amounts to ensure that the net amount received, after tax, is the same as it would have been were the payment not subject to tax.There has been widespread public outcry against the Parking Meter Project over the past months with a movement staging protest action against the “draconian” costs and penalties of the project.Already, the New Building Society (NBS) is challenging the legality of the parking meter By-laws in the courts.The case comes up before Justice Brassington Reynolds on February 20. (Guyana Times) Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedParking meters: Option to cancel contract included in Committee’s final report- FerreiraAugust 17, 2017In “Business”Letter: Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration: Principles and PracticeSeptember 8, 2018In “Letters”Parking Meter contract ‘one of the most corrupt deals’ in Guyana’s history – RamsammyFebruary 14, 2017In “Opinion”,The highly controversial contract between the Georgetown Mayor and City Council (M&CC) and the parking meter company, Smart City Solutions (SCS), can only be terminated through arbitration.According to the contract, if in any event a dispute arises over the terms of the agreement and there is need for it to be terminated, it must be done through arbitration by the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) in Miami, Florida.The contract states under the “Dispute Resolution” clause that “the Parties expressly declare that any disputes arising in connection with the interpretation, performance, breach and termination of this Agreement shall be settled through arbitration.”It specified that the arbitration must be administered through the ICDR in accordance with the applicable rules of the Arbitration Committee of the International Business Council.There has been much resistance against the Parking Meter Project since the idea was flouted by the City Council.Since its implementation, that resistance has grown into a mass movement calling for the initiative to be shelved and the contract which was signed in total secrecy to be scrapped.But it appears that the parking meter company has taken all precautionary steps to ensure it is protected in any turn of events regarding the initiative.The contract stipulates that City Hall must be liable for any expenses incurred by the company as a result of a third party action.Among the shocking clauses in the contract are: the fact that the company can extend the duration of the 49-year agreement for an additional 49 years under the same terms of the current agreement, subject to the approval of City Hall; the company was given the option to operate in Guyana for almost one century; the contract’s ‘terror clause’ protects Smart City Solutions, as it includes a clause intended to scare the Mayor and City Council over the prospect of terminating the agreement.Hundreds continue to protest against the controversial parking metersShould the company be ordered by any court to take any form of action, which will incur expenses, then these will become the burden on the City Council.The reimbursement for any loss suffered as a result of third party action is titled “Indemnification.”The section reads, “The city shall indemnify the Concessionaire against all liabilities, costs, expenses, damages and losses including, but not limited to any direct, indirect or consequential losses, loss of profit, loss of reputation and all interest, penalties and legal costs and all other professional costs and expenses suffered or incurred by the Concessionaire.”The contract also provides for the Company to be reimbursed if any claim, action, motion, petition, summons, writ or other proceeding whatsoever made against the Town Clerk, the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown which results in the delay in the performance or frustration of this agreement.Additionally, if such payment due from the City is subject to tax (whether by way of direct assessment or withholding at its source), the company shall be entitled to receive from the city such amounts to ensure that the net amount received, after tax, is the same as it would have been were the payment not subject to tax.There has been widespread public outcry against the Parking Meter Project over the past months with a movement staging protest action against the “draconian” costs and penalties of the project.Already, the New Building Society (NBS) is challenging the legality of the parking meter By-laws in the courts.The case comes up before Justice Brassington Reynolds on February 20. (Guyana Times) read more