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We must do more – PM Christie on reducing cost of energy


Posted in: Regional News | 24 January 2017 | 1337

    Prime Minister Perry Christie addresses the opening ceremony of CSEFV
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    Prime Minister Perry Christie addresses the opening ceremony of CSEFV

    Prime Minister of The Bahamas, the Rt. Hon. Perry Christie wants the Caribbean Region to do much more in its quest reduce the cost of energy.

    In a wide-ranging address at the opening ceremony of the Fifth Caribbean Sustainable Energy Forum (CSEF) on Monday evening in The Bahamas, the Prime Minister said that the cost of doing business in the Region was too high as a result of the high price of energy. He said that the Region had to have a sense of urgency to confront its challenges.

    “The cost of energy is too high. (This Forum) is a welcome discussion for our country. It enables us to recognise that there is so much more we have to do and more quickly. Because to the extent that we live in a competitive region and the cost of doing business becomes more complex by virtue of cost associated with energy, we have a challenge,” he underscored to the audience at the British Colonial Hilton in Nassau.

     

    Prime Minister Christie, the keynote speaker at the opening,also pointed out that energy had to be connected to what “our countries need to function efficiently”.

    “We have an incredible opportunity to truly move forward in this area,” he added.

    The cost of energy and effectively harnessing the energy options available in the Region to boost development, were among the recurring themes in the remarks of the other speakers at the opening of the Forum. Representatives of the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), the Canadian government, the United States government, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the World Bank, the Organisation of American States (OAS) and the CARICOM Secretariat spoke t the opening ceremony.

    CSEF was established as a biennial sustainable energy event in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). It is a CARICOM Secretariat event which is organised in collaboration with the Government of The Bahamas. Support for the staging of the Forum is being provided by: the US Government, through the Organisation of American States (OAS); the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) executed Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Technical Assistance (REETA) Programme; the CDB, through the Canadian Support to the Energy Sector in the Caribbean Fund; the IDB; and the World Bank through the SIDS DOCK Support Programme.

    The Forum is intended to facilitate dialogue and actions towards the adoption of more robust policies and the transfer of appropriate technologies in renewable energy and energy efficiency in CARICOM. It seeks ultimately to enhance stakeholder support and contribution to diversification of the regional energy supply from its current fossil fuels base to a mix that includes significant renewable sources.

    A Ministerial Panel started the sessions on Tuesday morning. The Forum concludes on Wednesday afternoon. Panels will discuss a range of issues including climate and sustainable development and their effective linkages to the C-SERMS to lessons learned over the past five years regarding energy transition, and information and capacity-building. Participants will also discuss financing the Region’s sustainable energy needs and provide an outlook for the next ten years.

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