Finance Minister Winston Jordan on Wednesday disclosed that discussions are ongoing with officials in Norway to procure another review for the Amaila Falls Hydro Power Project as he restated the government’s commitment to providing cheap and reliable energy.
Speaking to a room full of leading Guyanese businessmen and women, Jordan said Norway seems keen to finance an independent review to, once and for all, pronounce on the viability or non-viability of the project.
He was at the time addressing the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association 20th Anniversary Awards Presentation and Dinner at the Pegasus Hotel, Georgetown.
“What we need is cheap energy to open the flood gates of manufacturing. What we need is good economic and political governance to open the flood gates of prosperity,” the Minister said.
“Let me assure you that your Government is committed to providing cheap and reliable energy,” he added. Jordan announced too that the government is currently involved currently with the IDB to study the correct energy matrix and energy mix for Guyana to meet its needs for the next 30 years.
This study is due early next year and it will include the analysis of five hydro sites, including the Amaila site as well.
“Anticipated zones of growth include the Intermediate Savannahs for agriculture and the harnessing of wind power, biomass and solar for energy,” Jordan further explained.
The Government recently approved a clean energy project by a private developer, which will see 25 MW of clean, wind-generated power being sold to the national grid.
He reasoned that with this energy matrix, rice and sugar should have better cost structures, “especially if our private sector partners with the Government to transform these industries through technological innovation, visionary thinking and competitive marketing.” The Finance Minister said the Ministry he heads is open to working with the Private Sector to clear all hurdles in the path to more competitiveness.
Not only cheap energy, but Jordan also reminded of the Tax Reform Committee which was established to examine all aspects of the tax system.
The Amaila Falls project was clouded in controversy under the previous government as concerns were raised about the viability of the project and its funding.