In 2016, Haiti's public debt at $ 2,771 million reached 33.5% of Haitian GDP and that translates to $255 per individual citizen. As per recent reports (dated May 27, 2017), the national and international debt of the Republic of Haiti hovers around US$3 billion out of which $1 billion represents internal debt and $2 billion of external one.
An 'External Debt' (or foreign debt) is the total debt of a country due to the foreign creditors while an 'Internal Debt' (or domestic debt) is the part of the total government debt in a country that is owed to lenders within the country.
If we compare this debt amount with other neighboring Caribbean countries, we might understand the relative soundness and solvency of the Haitian economy.
Breaking News - The latest embarrassment for the Haitian government. According to website in Pretoria in South Africa, (iol.co.za) a judge in Pretoria ordered all furniture at the Haitian Embassy be kept in a storage until the embassy is able to settle its debt. The embassy has not paid it rent obligation for over 10 months for a total of R550 500.
Personnel at the Haitian embassy did not let their possessions confiscated without a fight. The website reported that upon the arrival of the truck to evacuate the property, personnel at the embassy called police to report robbery. The Police was met by the sheriff as they were ordered to take possession.
According to Wyclef Jean's accountant in an email to his creditors: "there ain't no money". His business manager declared that the singer was broke.
Wyclef Jean agreed in 2013 to pay the law firm Shukat Arrow Hafer Weber & Herbsman $100,000 to settle an outstanding bill that had reached $133,000. The disbursement were to be as follows Wyclef Jean was to pay the firm $10,000 by August 1, 2013, and $50,000 by year's end. However, record showed that he did not make any payment.
In addition, The Haitian Rap Singer is still dealing with a tax lien of around $2.9 million that he has not paid
Although Haiti gained its independence from France and became the first black-led republic globally in 1804, foreign interests have continued to meddle in the island's affairs. France never forgave Haiti for defeating them and demanded 150 million francs as compensation for France's forfeiture of real estate and slaves. If Haiti didn't comply, France threatened to re-instate slavery.
Repayment of the debt ruined Haiti's economy, a major factor in its poorest-nation-in-the Western-Hemisphere status. Well over a century passed before Haiti cleared its debt to France in 1947. Millions upon millions of interest dollars protracted repayment to French banks, who lent Haiti money to pay off interest on the principal. In 1922, the U.S. assumed part of Haiti's debt that France had reduced to 90 million francs. In demanding compensatory damages, France violated its Declaration of the Rights of Man which states: "Men are born free and remain free and equal in rights."
Hugo Chavez, late President of Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, will remain the most iconic figure of 21st century on the World Political Map. The entire population of Haiti will remain indebted to what Hugo Chavez did for Haitian people and Latin America as a whole. There is no denying of the fact that Chavez deeply loved Haiti and its people.
It was on March 12, 2007 when Chavez visited the then Haitian President René Préval at National Palace of Haiti (that was shattered by the 2010 earthquake) and declared enormous economic aids that were intended for directly aiding the poverty-struck Haitian people as well as sustainable growth of Haiti. These announcements were a part of the PetroCaribe deal signed between Haiti and Venezuela in 2006.
Haiti Telecommunication International (Haitel) is now in receivership as a result of its tax problems with the government. General Tax Directorate (DGI) director general Jean Baptiste Clark Neptune announced that the request for Haitel's receivership was approved in order to continue the company's operations and protect its employees and shareholders. Neptune clarified that the measure was taken not to close the telecommunication company but to help it resume its operations.
It can be recalled that Haitel has been buried in debt. Since 2005, it has accumulated a debt of more than $80 million in government taxes from several institutions such as DGI, National Council of Telecommunications (CONATEL), BRH and BNC, among others. The total debt accounts for 40% of government taxes.
CONATEL director Jean Marie Guillaume, who held a meeting with the DGI director, said that Haitel could no longer keep up its operation. It does not have money to pay its employees and purchase fuel for its generations anymore. As a matter of fact, the director added, Haitel's employees have not received their salary for over five months.
Haiti has suffered enormously since 2010's devastating earthquake reduced Port-au-Prince to rubble, inflicting major damage to the rest of the country also. Relief aid poured in from major nations, billions of dollars. Tent cities were quickly erected and non-government organizations like Doctors Without Borders tended to the maimed and sick. The U.S. donated $1.8 billion to lift Haiti out its perpetual state of poverty.
But Haiti, especially flattened Port-au-Prince, has not begun essential re-building efforts, for example, permanent housing and an electric grid. Two factors have impeded Port-au-Prince's restoration: the Government of Haiti's (GOH) nearly annihilated administration (16,000 functionaries lost their lives), and its tenuous collaboration with the U.S. to jump-start re-building projects. As a result, little progress has made.
Less than a century before the shameful injustice the Nazis would inflict upon a people, Germany busied itself humiliated Haiti for showing allegiance to the wrong side in the French-Prussian war. After successfully strong-arming the smaller country into making payment on their debts to German merchants with high indemnities, the German's ended the seizure of the Haitian warships, used as leverage, by returning the ships with their Haitian flags trampled and smeared with feces.
This was, however, not to be enough. Emile Lüders, child of a Haitian mother and German father, was arrested and sentenced to jail for thirty days after beating a Haitian soldier. After an appeal he was fined to a year's jail-time on the 14th of October 1897. After forcing the Haitian Government and the then President, Simon Sam, into pardoning Lüders, Germany demanded to have all the police and judges involved in the case fired in accordance to the initial request which the Haitian government had ignored.
Debt bondage occurs when a person is forced into debt, or voluntarily commits themselves as a form of collateral to pay off a debt.
The punitive nature of the system undervalues work performed and undercredits the debt being paid down. Circumstances of debt bondage are uncertain as to scope of tasks performed and duration of labor. As a result little progress is made towards paying down the debt. It can often turn into an intergenerational debt burden.
The United Nations officially considers debt bondage as a type of "modern day slavery". Since the mid-fifties, it has been legally banned by article 1(a) of the United Nations 1956 Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery. But nonetheless, it continues unabated in underdeveloped countries, such as South Asia and the Caribbean. In these places, no infrastructure exists to declare bankruptcy or be protected by consumer protection laws. Small- or mid-size businesses can't get approved for credit because they own no land titles or liquidity assets as forms of collateral.
The Provisional Electoral Council(CEP), has an "I owe You" that it does not want to honor.
The "Haitian Joudalist" has learned that 40 Haitian Television stations are asking the CEP for payment amounting to 9 million Haitian Gourdes. This is close to $250,000 that the CEP owes the media for services provided during the runoff election in Haiti.
Can somebody start a foreclosure procedure on the CEP?
What makes this even more interesting is that the Haitian electoral institution admitted that they in fact owe the money to the Television stations. The only problem is that it can not be deliver now. They also affirmed that the money will be delivered soon.
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