Newsletter – January 2024

Mr. Juan A. Sabater

As Oversight Board Member, Juan A. Sabater will add Expertise in Economic Growth Through Investment

President Joe Biden appointed Juan A. Sabater to serve as member of the Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico. Sabater, who was born in Puerto Rico and spent his childhood on the island, is a Partner and Co-President of Valor Equity Partners, a private equity firm.
Welcoming the new Board member, the Oversight Board’s Chair David Skeel said: “The Oversight Board has almost completed the debt restructuring and has stabilized Puerto Rico’s finances. Fulfilling PROMESA’s mandate to achieve fiscal responsibility now depends to a large degree on a growing economy. That is our focus, and investing in economic growth has been Juan Sabater’s professional focus.”
For his part, Sabater said: “It is both a great privilege and honor to learn about President Biden’s intention to appoint me to the Oversight Board. I am very grateful to the President for the opportunity. I look forward to working with my other Board colleagues to promote the growth and success of Puerto Rico. I have great confidence in the abilities and potential of the people of Puerto Rico. I also know that, working together, we can continue to sustain and build momentum towards growth.”
Get to know Juan Sabater by reading the official White House statement here.

Questions about the PREPA debt restructuring? Find answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the PREPA Plan of Adjustment on the Oversight Board’s webpage

The FAQs provide information about how the Plan reduces the debt, how much PREPA’s creditors claim they are owed, why PREPA must pay the reduced debt and why the debt cannot be cancelled completely, why the Plan of Adjustment proposes a Legacy Charge, and many other questions.
The Oversight Board also prepared a Fact Sheet with details about the proposed Legacy Charge that will be used to repay the substantially reduced debt. The document offers insight on how the average residential electricity bill will change once the Legacy Charge begins.
On the debt web page, we have also included information on debt restructurings that have been completed and more details on Title III and Title VI of PROMESA.

Critical Improvements to San Juan Cruise Terminals Can Move Forward

The members of the Oversight Board approved a budget resolution to reflect the appropriation of $350 million to fund a Settlement Agreement between the Puerto Rico Ports Authority (PRPA) and the Puerto Rico Government Development Bank Debt Recovery Authority (DRA) and to set aside funds for other transportation infrastructure needs.
In 2022, the Oversight Board had approved the concession agreement between the Puerto Rico Public-Private Partnerships Authority and Global Ports Holding PLC for the repair, improvement, operation, and maintenance of the San Juan Bay Cruise Terminals.
The agreement stipulates that PRPA must deliver the pier assets to the concessionaire “free and clear” of liens, and in January 2024, the Oversight Board informed the Government that it approved the proposed transaction to settle six legacy credit facilities owed by PRPA to DRA.
The proposed settlement is critical to complete the development of the cruise terminals, which aims to transform Puerto Rico into the Caribbean’s main cruise ship destination by modernizing and expanding nine docks in San Juan. Now the rehabilitation and repair of the San Juan Cruise Terminals can begin.
The Government’s contribution to fund the proposed settlement transaction is part of the proceeds from the recent concession agreement between Puerto Rico Highway and Transportation Authority (HTA) and Puerto Rico Tollroads LLC, specifically those used to repay the loan the Commonwealth had extended to HTA in fiscal year 2022.
Find out more about this budget resolution here

Engagement with Stakeholders:

January 17, 2024

Oversight Board Executive Director Robert Mujica visited the Quebradillas and spoke with Mayor Heriberto Velez about economic development opportunities and the challenges that exist for municipal governments surrounding permitting.

Mujica also met with local firefighters who surprised him with a plaque to thank him for his support of firefighters on the island. In December, the Oversight Board approved the law to increase firefighters’ salaries to support retention and recruitment of firefighters throughout Puerto Rico.

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