No Delivery Date Yet for Puerto Rico’s Fiscal 2014 Audited Statements
SAN JUAN—While talks continue between government officials and independent auditing firm KPMG to finally release Puerto Rico’s audited financial statements for fiscal year 2014, La Fortaleza still has not set a delivery date for the long-awaited report, Public Affairs Secretary Jesús Manuel Ortiz said Wednesday.
“Certainly, we don’t have a delivery date,” said Ortiz, while adding that meetings between KPMG and government officials are still underway.
Following an eight-week final stretch to end the auditing process, the administration of Gov. Alejandro García Padilla was expected to release the financial statements early this month. However, recent fiscal developments and an impasse over matters related to the troubled Government Development Bank (GDB) have once again delayed the delivery of the statements, which were due almost a year ago.
As for the GDB, sources have told Caribbean Business that there remains too much uncertainty in figuring out the government bank’s loan loss reserves. “It’s a matter of perception of the government’s ability to pay its loans and lines of credit with the GDB,” said one source who asked to remain nameless.
The commonwealth’s cash crunch has taken its toll on the GDB, as the central government and its instrumentalities have failed to repay the money the bank has loaned to them for the last several years.
“Added to that uncertainty is that if the government can restructure its debt, then there would be more money on hand; if the government isn’t able to restructure, then there is less money. There’s a bunch assumptions tied to the central government that are tough to nail down,” another source added, while insisting that completing the work has taken more time because of this.
As previously reported by Caribbean Business, the García Padilla administration is currently evaluating a proposal from KPMG to handle the audited financial reports for fiscal year 2015, which are due May 1, mere days away.
KPMG also carried out the report for fiscal 2013, which was delivered two months past its deadline. During the past three years, KPMG has been paid roughly $20 million in professional-services contracts, according to government records.
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