Finance Minister offers to settle GK depositors from next Monday

By Saman Indrajith

Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake told parliament yesterday that the government could commence paying back the Golden Key depositors starting from next Monday without waiting for the next hearing date of the case filed by them seeking the reimbursement of their funds.

Responding to a question raised by Opposition Leader Nimal Siripala de Silva he said the government had agreed to pay 41% of the deposits of the Golden Key depositors subject to the withdrawal of the pending court cases filed by them.

The depositors would be paid from the funds generated through the sale of assets of the company, the minister said. The Central Bank is carrying out a legal and financial due diligence of the Golden Key Company and related entities, from which the asset values will be verified and be sold to generate funds for the purpose.

Those with deposits of Rs 2 million or less would be compensated within a month and depositors with deposits between Rs 2 – 10 million would be compensated within two months while those with deposits exceeding 10 million are to be reimbursed within a year. 

"The depositors have to trust the government. This government, unlike the previous regime has kept its promises and it will continue to do so. So, as the depositors unanimously agreed at the meeting, should withdraw the pending court case, for us to go forward with this arrangement" the Minister said.

 Minister Karunanayake said the former governor of the Central Bank, Ajith Nivard Cabraal had formulated a repayment plan promising to pay 41% of the amount owed to depositors in 2013 but it had never been implemented.

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