A Puerto Rico official defended the commonwealth’s financial transparency practices after a negative news report in which the Wall Street Journal highlighted a late-March meeting Puerto Rico held in New York with selected investors. The press was barred.
“The commonwealth and GDB are committed to providing investors with timely and accurate access to information,” the interim president of the Government Development Bank of Puerto Rico, José Pagán, said in a statement. “To that end, information made available at the March 22 investor meeting was subsequently posted on the GDB website less than one business day after the meeting took place.”
He also said the March investor meeting had been disclosed ahead of time with a press release and a notice on the GDB’s website.
The Journal suggested Puerto Rico had privileged certain investors with the exclusive meeting.
“As a testament to our commitment to investor disclosure, we held our annual credit conference on May 17, 2013, which was open to all investors and this year hosted the largest number of participants ever,” Pagán said. “We followed the credit conference with an investor webcast on July 18, 2013, again open to all investors, in which investors were able to freely ask questions to commonwealth officials. All presentations and materials related to these meetings and conferences, including videos and transcripts, were also posted on the GDB investor relations website and/or on EMMA in a timely fashion.
Pagan said the GDB and the commonwealth routinely publish government statistics and material events, including monthly disclosures of the GDB economic activity index and general fund revenues received by the Treasury Department.
He said the commonwealth plans to release an updated version of its financial information and operating data report soon.