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Jul 29, 2020

PM Barrow Comments on P.U.C./B.E.L. Logjam

Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow also weighed in on the row between the Public Utilities Commission and Belize Electricity Limited regarding a power purchase agreement that B.E.L. has been ordered to sign with Santander Sugar Energy Limited.  While B.E.L. has indicated that it would rather enter into negotiations regarding the terms of agreement with Santander, P.U.C. says that, as regulator, it is the sole body to determine the terms of the agreement.  Both parties are at a stalemate and the PM says he has been asked to intervene.


Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I don’t know the details of the particular cause of the current confrontation or contention between B.E.L. and the regulator but I gather that somebody has already gone to court and that’s how you sort out that kind of thing.  It is nevertheless unfortunate that there should be this kind of a logjam.  I don’t like it that B.E.L. and the P.U.C. are at loggerheads.  I won’t get into personalities but you got some very strong personalities at the P.U.C. and you have some very strong personalities at B.E.L.  I hope this is not just a matter of personality conflicts and I don’t want to cheapen the situation in suggesting that it is.  But certainly the chairman of B.E.L. has been saying to me that he needs me to sit down with B.E.L. and the P.U.C. as regulator, I’ve just been naturally snowed under with everything else that is happening in terms of COVID and so I have not had the opportunity to do that.”

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