Investments: Hard Blow to Legal Security

Empresa Tomza Guatemala S.A. reported that in Nicaragua the government of President Daniel Ortega illegally expropriated and confiscated the company's assets, which together amount to $4 million in investments.

Monday, April 19, 2021

The expropriation process took several years. Tomza executives explained that in 2015 they were granted the permits for the construction of a property located in the municipality of Tipitapa, department of Managua.

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In 2016, Nicaragua's Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Marena) withdrew the previously granted permit from them. At the time the permit was withdrawn, construction was 92% complete.

Fernando Carreon, director of corporate relations of Tomza Central America, explained to that since July 2016 "... no one from the company has been allowed to enter. We were expelled by the Public Force of that country. Attempts were made to reactivate the permit, but in November 2020 we were expropriated."

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Carreon added that they were not aware of the expropriation because they were never notified of the fact, "... but it was until March 2021 because part of the property was painted green, whose colors identify the Nicaraguan Petroleum Company (Petrónic)."

The expropriation reflects a lack of legal security for investors. In addition, it follows the growing lack of employment opportunities in that country, since in 2016 when the security forces arrived there were 85 people inside, including construction employees and others in training, and they had planned to generate 235 jobs, detailed Tomza's corporate relations director.

Tomza's plans were to commercialize gas in the local market, through Envasadora de Nicaragua S.A. (Enisa).

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