Grenada government silent on purchasing shares in GRENLEC

by: - December 27, 2012
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Grenada Electricity Company in Queens Park, Grenada

Grenada Electricity Company in Queens Park, Grenada

ST GEORGE’S, Grenada, Dec 27 – The Grenada government is maintaining its silence on whether or not it intends purchasing the majority shares in the Grenada Electricity Company (GRENLEC).

Media reports here indicate that the US-based WRB Enterprises is selling its 51 per cent shares majority shares in the island’s lone electricity company.

In November, WRB Enterprises is reported to have written to the Tillman Thomas administration offering to sell the shares. It gave the government a 30 day deadline.

Prime Minister Thomas says the government will soon inform the public about its decision.

Under the existing agreement, the first option to purchase the shares must be given to the Grenada government. However, government had to declare its intention by December 26 or WRB can seek another buyer.

Opposition leader, Dr. Keith Mitchell said he would support the government acquiring the majority shares even as some trade unions appear to be against the move.

“I would much prefer GRENLEC to be owned by a power-generating concern, whose interest would not just be profits but also to maintain the world-class facility that GRENLEC has become,” said Chester Humphrey, president general of the Technical and Allied Workers Union (WAWU), which represents GRENLEC employees.

There are reports that the Canadian-based Emera is willing to buy the shares that are estimated at EC$100 million (One EC dollar = US$0.37 cents).

In 2007, Emera acquired from the US-based private equity fund manager The Caribbean Basin Power Fund (CBPF), a 19 per cent interest in the St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) and it also announced its intention to acquire a 38 per cent stake in Light& Power Holdings, the lone power utility company in Barbados.

Caribbean Media Corporation