Should Haitian government liquidate national electric company EDH?

Posted by on Thursday, March 26, 2015 Under: Economy

One of the biggest not so breaking news in Haiti lately has been the headlines about EDH , the national electricity company being bankrupt, to a point of not being able to even send invoice to its customers.

EDH has been a bankrupt institution for years with annual deficit nearing $500 million; nearly half of the country's GDP.
What most people don't know about EDH however, is that it is the largest Haitian institution in terms of financial transactions and facilities.
Besides being the main distributor of electricity in Haiti, EDH is also responsible for the import, storage. selling and distribution of petroleum products that Haiti purchases from Venezuela, through the PetroCaribe.

The conditions and terms of the PetroCaribe required that a state institution manages the gas transactions instead of a private or foreign company; since EDH already had some gas storage facilities for its power plants, then Haitian president René Garcia Préval, chose EDH as the sole importer and distributor of oil in Haiti in order for the country to qualify.

What is the solution now after a decade? 

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and it is unthinkable for the government to keep spending nearly $500 million annually for over a decade to make up for the losses of this pit hole of an institution.

That kind of money would be better spent on solar energy and on building crucial infrastructures such as roads, schools, universities etc... so needed in Haiti.

The time for Haiti to revise its energy policies is way overdue. Those in charge must start to answer the hard questions and give a clear understanding of what they will do to change the country from this dangerous path.

Is the Haitian government finally ready to do the right thing and liquidate this national electricity company?

If so which institution will handle the business of gas with Venezuela, since the selling of EDH wold have to include its gas storage facilities, otherwise it would take years for the new owner to build replacements?

Should Haiti even continue to be a member of this PetroCaribe alliance with an ever politically and economically unstable Venezuela?

Yesterday IMF has announced that it would stop its support to the Haitian government unless something is done about EDH being bankrupt; Haitian officials have not yet responded.

In : Economy 

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