Categorized | National News

Energy Cost Creates Business Challenges

One of the biggest challenges that entrepreneurs in The Bahamas face is the cost of doing business and according to the Minister of Financial Services, Trade, Industry and Immigration, Brent Symonette, the cost of electricity is a major issue.

Speaking with reporters after a Power Breakfast yesterday, at Breezes Resorts and Spa, with The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers’ Confederation along with Bahamas Financial Services Board, Mr. Symonette weighed in on what he thought was one of the biggest problems when it comes to doing business in The Bahamas.

“What we are talking about in here as the Chamber of Commerce is one of the biggest problems they have in the cost of doing business is the cost of electricity.

“We have to look at ways of bringing that cost down,” Mr. Symonette said.

While noting that the cost of electricity is high, Mr. Symonette drew an illustration of a business that pays thousands of dollars to Bahamas Power and Light (BPL), in demand charges, which appears on your bill and indicates peak usage.

“For instance, some businesses have a demand charge. I know of a business that pays $10,000 a month to BEC just for the demand charge.

“That’s not the electricity bill.  That’s not a surcharge. That’s not the rent.

“So, these are the issues that put the cost of business up and if you talk to the owners of Breezes, they will tell you that one of the highest cost of Bahamian hotel industry is the cost of electricity,” Mr. Symonette said.

Mr. Symonette was responding to questions by the media concerning the government’s plan on addressing the vast number of recent power outages in New Providence.

Mr. Symonette stated that he could not specifically speak to plans as he is not the minister responsible for BPL.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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