Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

Investments Division

    Mission

    To continuously maximise shareholder value for the people of Trinidad and Tobago, with a focus on good corporate governance in the State Agencies.

    Vision

    The premier institution in the region for the oversight of the State Enterprise (SE) sector.

    Overview

    The Investments Division of the Ministry of Finance was established in January 1992 and is responsible for executing the investment policy as prescribed by Cabinet. Accordingly, the mandate of the Division includes oversight, monitoring and where necessary, the rationalization of GORTT equity holdings in commercial enterprises.

    The Division acts on behalf of the Minister of Finance (Corporation Sole) and carries out the corporate function. This includes representation of the Minister at shareholders’ meetings; establishment of new Enterprises and rationalization of the investments portfolio of the Shareholder.

    The Division is also responsible for conducting management/performance audits of State Enterprises, to ensure that they operate in an efficient and effective basis and that they discharge their obligations with respect to public accountability.

    Functions of the Investments Division

    Given its mandate to monitor and manage GORTT existing investment portfolio as described above, the activities of the Investments Division include the following:

    • Establishment of performance criteria for all State Enterprises;
    • Monitoring the adherence to the performance criteria;
    • Ensuring consistency between Enterprise performance and GORTT macro-economic policy objectives;
    • Management of a comprehensive database on the State Enterprise Sector;
    • Commissioning of operational and management audits of State Enterprises;
    • Appraising and evaluating investment plans of State Enterprises to ensure the profitability of investment projects;
    • Analyzing of the operations of individual Enterprises to ensure consistency with GORTT macroeconomic and sectoral objectives;
    • Preparing economic and financial appraisals of Enterprises;
    • Preparing quarterly and annual forecasts and reviews of domestic investment activity;
    • Providing overall strategic planning and co-ordination of the Sector; and
    • Preparing Annual Reviews of the Sector.

    With regard to the rationalization of GORTT equity holdings in corporate entities, the functions and responsibilities include:

    • Design and formulation of a Comprehensive Divestment Policy;
    • Development of a Divestment Action Plan;
    • Continuous review and analysis of State Enterprises in the context of a structured and orderly Divestment Programme; and
    • Monitoring and evaluating the fiscal, social and environmental impacts of the Divestment Programme.

    State Enterprises

    The Minister of Finance (Corporation Sole) has responsibility for the State’s entire portfolio of investments of which the State Enterprise Sector is a major element.

    At this time, the portfolio includes:

    • Forty-seven (47) wholly-owned companies;
    • Seven (7) majority-owned companies;
    • Five (5) minority-owned (i.e. less than fifty percent holdings); and
    • Forty-Nine (49) companies held indirectly as subsidiaries of wholly-owned companies.

    Additionally, seventeen (17) non-operational companies are at various stages of liquidation.

    The Investments Division of the Ministry acts on behalf of the Minister of Finance (Corporation Sole) and carries out corporate functions such as:

    1. Shareholder Function:
      1. Appointment of directors to the Board of Directors of the State Enterprises;
      2. Representing Corporation Sole’s interest at Annual General Meetings;
      3. Submission of the annual audited accounts of the State Enterprises to the Public Accounts (Enterprises) Committee (PAEC) on a yearly basis;
      4. Maintenance of the Share Register of Government shareholdings in the State Enterprise Sector.
    2. General Performance Monitoring of the State Enterprise Sector
      1. Financial Monitoring: conducting an analysis of the Enterprises profitability;
      2. Revenue collection from State Enterprises: this includes dividend payments, repayment of loans to Government;
      3. Funding for State Enterprises: such as subsidy payments, deficit financing to fund operating expenses, capital injection, loan repayment;
      4. Monitoring of State Enterprise indebtedness: These include all loans sourced by the State Enterprises.
    3. Management of Government’s Investment Portfolio 
      1.    Inform and review Divestment Policy;
      2.    Divestment Proposals;
      3.    Investment Appraisal.
    4. Compensation to Boards of Directors
      1. Classification of State Enterprises, Statutory Bodies and Cabinet Appointed Committees for the payment of fees to the Board of Directors.

    In addition, as part of its function, the Division prepares a number of reports routinely.

    These include:

    Central Audit Committee

    The Central Audit was established by Cabinet Minute #1266 of September 2001.  The Unit became operational in November 2002 and is headed by a Director with supervisory responsibility for six Senior Audit Analysts.

    The main function of the unit is to monitor the performance of State Enterprises and to conduct audits if necessary, to ensure that the internal controls exist to maintain the integrity of their assets and their revenue streams.

    Another function is to develop the Internal Audit Functions of the State Enterprises to give the necessary assurances to the Board of Directors and ultimately the Minister of Finance that the enterprises are functioning efficiently and adhering to the directives of the line Ministries and the Corporation Sole.

    The members of the unit also sit on the Audit Committees of the State Enterprises, thereby obtaining first-hand knowledge of potential issues facing the enterprises.  Thus mitigation strategies could be put in place to neutralise any fallout.  Also the Minister of Finance could be alerted to potential problems and bring his influence to bear to avoid them.

    The unit also receives from the State Enterprises monthly award of contracts for review to ensure that the State Enterprises are following established procurement procedures.  After review the unit may select certain contracts for a detailed review.  This highlights any flaws in the procurement procedures of the Enterprises and provides feedback for correction to ensure that there is accountability in the State Enterprises for the issue of contract.

    Legislation

    Guidelines

    Contact Information

    The Investments Division
    Ministry of Finance
    Level 15, Finance Building
    Eric Williams Financial Complex
    Independence Square
    Port of Spain

    Telephone: (868) 612-9700, extension: 2509

    Central Audit Committee
    Ministry of Finance
    Level 3, Finance Building
    Eric Williams Financial Complex
    Independence Square
    Port-of-Spain

    Telephone: (868) 612-9700, extensions: 1300, 1303-1307