Patrick Jones, LoveFM recently reported on Facebook:
"The Government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow today took the first steps at acquiring majority shares in Belize Electricity Limited. At a meeting with BEL's Chief Executive Officer Lynn Young today, Prime Minister Barrow asked the BEL boss to convey to Fortis Inc., government's desired to assume control of the company by purchasing the majority shares in the country's sole electricity provider."
from a friend....
BEL got the transmission line from the original owners of the dam for $1 as it was the sensible thing for that company to do - BEL being the transmission and distribution provider is responsible for maintenance of its system. Part of the package when some adjustments were being done to the original master agreement between the two companies. Please remember, that cost for hydro power would have factored in the cost of building the lines anyway, and the Belize consumer would be paying the cost of hydro power in the electricity rates they pay. So selling for a $1 was not because the company wanted to gift BEL. They were getting their investment back from the rate payers. It was the sensible thing to do. (BEL gets back maintenance costs from consumers.)
However, when Fortis bought the generator shortly after, they had BEL agree to pay them 30million for the hydro lines. In essence, BEL gave back the lines to BECOL (Fortis) and agreed to pay them for it - one way of skimming 30 million out of BEL for Fortis. And BEL wants the consumers to again, pay for their 30 million dollar gift to Fortis.
PM Barrow meets with President/CEO of BEL
Press Release - Belize Press Office, Belmopan - June 10, 2011 - The Hon. Prime Minister met today in his Belmopan Office with Mr. Lynn Young, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Belize Electricity Ltd (BEL) to discuss the current financial position of BEL.
Also present at the meeting were the Legal Counsel in the Ministry of Finance and the Financial Secretary.
The Prime Minister asked Mr. Young to convey to FORTIS INC., the majority shareholder in BEL, the Government’s interest in purchasing majority shares in BEL so as to assume control of the company.
Mr. Young undertook to immediately relay this message to FORTIS INC. and to convey their response as soon as possible.
In the meantime and in order to ensure an uninterrupted supply of power from CFE and other producers to BEL, and also to provide time for possible negotiations with FORTIS, the Government has agreed to pre-pay a further sum of BZ$4.0 million toward its future utility bills with BEL.