President Yameen pledges 24-hours electricity to all inhabited islands during 2015

Reliable electricity for 24 hours will be provided to all inhabited islands during 2015, President Abdulla Yameen pledged at a ceremony held last night to inaugurate the distribution of 77 generators by government utility company Fenaka to the atolls.

In addition to the 77 generators, President Yameen said the Fenaka Corporation has procured 60 generators.

“God willing, all these engines will be commissioned next year and all the equipment needed for the engines and the distribution network has now been brought,” Yameen said.

When distribution of the power generators is complete around mid-2015, President Yameen said electricity for 24 hours would be assured for the entire country “for the first time in Maldivian history”.

Aside from the 170 islands covered by Fenaka, Yameen noted that the State Electricity Company (STELCO) was already providing electricity to other inhabited islands with larger populations.

Assuring electricity service across the country was “not a small accomplishment,” he added, expressing gratitude to the Fenaka management team and CEO Mohamed Nimal.

Fenaka was established in June 2012 by former President Dr Mohamed Waheed after dissolving seven provincial utility companies formed by his predecessor.

The 77 new generators were procured for US$5.9 million from China’s FuJian Yanan Power, including 40 generators of 160 -200 kilowatts, 24 generators of 250-300 kilowatts and 13 of 500 -1000 kilowatts.

Cables required for the project were purchased from Sri Lanka’s Kelani Cables Company for US$33.9 million

A contract for the distributional boxes for the project was awarded to local Power Engineering company for approximately US$ 16.9 million in July.

In July, opposition Maldivian Democratic Party MPs objected to frequent power cuts in their constituencies, including Addu City, Noonu Velidhoo and Laamu Gan.

Yameen meanwhile said efforts were underway to provide electricity services at an affordable price, which includes making arrangements for purchasing oil and generating electricity from renewable sources.

Following a visit by Indian Foreign Minister Salman Kurshid in February, the Indian government pledged to supply petroleum products “on favourable terms.”

Yameen also said state-owned enterprises (SOEs) should be “integrated with the government’s mainframe policy,” which would ensure that government-owned companies cooperate, work towards common goals and implement the Progressive Party of Maldives’ (PPM) manifesto.

The new administration sought to identify “inherent problems” with the government companies and improve interfacing and networking.

While the boardroom would have autonomy to manage the company, Yameen revealed that a group of ministers have been tasked with coordinating among the companies.