JIS News

Several communities in Clarendon, which have been without electricity for a long time, will soon have access to the service through the Rural Electrification Programme (REP), which was established more than 30 years ago. The districts include Krall/Peckham, Gravel Lane, Havana Heights and Maxwell Street.
Speaking recently at a official launching ceremony, held in the Krall/Peckham square, Minister of Industry, Technology, Energy and Commerce, Phillip Paulwell said that since 1975, the REP has been “doing an excellent job” on behalf of the country.
“This entity was incorporated as an executing agency of the government, following surveys which indicated a need for rural electrification and a dedicated unit for its implementation. The company operated on the premise that it would undertake the expansion of electrical services to rural areas, where the expansion of such services would not be financially viable to retailers such as the JPSCo,” he said.
Mr. Paulwell pointed out that the mandate of the REP had not changed over time.
“It is still actively engaged in providing electrical distribution lines in non-electrified areas and the provision of house wiring assistance through affordable loan programmes. The REP also offers house wiring assistance to householders in already electrified areas, through a revolving fund programme,” he indicated.
The Minister cited some of the “significant milestones” that have been achieved by the REP over three decades.
“More than 4,800 kilometres of distribution lines have been extended and some 69,000 households wired. These accomplishments have vastly extended the percentage of electrification from around 50 per cent when the programme was first implemented. Today, 92 per cent of the country is electrified and the intention of this latest phase is to move the figure to 96 per cent over the next three years,” he said.
Mr. Paulwell pointed out that the effort of the REP would be stepped up. “This year, we are stepping up the pace with a $600 million project that will provide an additional 20,000 rural households with electricity and under our revolving loan scheme, customers will continue to pay only 10 per cent of the cost of wiring, with the remainder being provided by an interest-free loan repayable over 4 years,” he said.

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