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Belize

Yearbook 2002

Belize. In early February, following pressure from the United States, the so-called economic citizenship program was terminated, through which foreigners were able to purchase Belizean citizenship for compensation of $ 50,000 per family or $ 40,000 per individual.

According to Countryaah website, the program was originally intended to attract capital and professional expertise to the country and has also contributed significantly to the Treasury ($ 6 million in 2001). But after the terrorist attacks against New York in 2001, it was feared that the program could lead to Belize becoming a base for international crime, especially drug trafficking, and terrorism.

2002 Belize

The February 2008 parliamentary election was surprisingly won by the opposition, the UDP, whose chairman Dean Barrow assumed the post of prime minister. The party won 25 of Parliament's 31 seats and the former government party had to settle for 6. The election campaign was characterized by corruption scandals both parties were involved in, but voters in particular chose to punish the former government party.

In August 2009, the state nationalized telephone and internet company Belize Telemedia Limited. In June 2011, it nationalized Belize Electricity Ltd (BEL), which had been in deep financial trouble for several years. Former principal shareholder, Canadian Fortis Inc. appealed to the nationalization, but the focus of the state was to secure the production of the country's largest electricity producer and distributor.

The March 2012 parliamentary elections saw a staggering decline of 8 seats for the UDP government party, but with 17 seats out of 31, it still had a majority in parliament. The opposition went 8 seats up to 14.

Belize, like the other Central American countries, is a transit country for drugs from Colombia in particular, but is not as badly affected by the accompanying violence. Since 2008, the government and the police have implemented a wide range of programs aimed at young people to prevent them from joining gangs, and in 2011 the government succeeded in establishing a ceasefire between the gangs, which further reduced the violence.

 

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