Business

Hopeful power supplier sweetens bid with healthcare upgrade promise

WMS, the company vying to edge out Shell North America, in a bid to stabilize New Providence’s power, recently added a sweetener to its bid, promising that the company would provide funding and resources to aid the government in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic through funding the restoration of the country’s deteriorating hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

The company issued a press statement extolling its commitment to providing debt-free financing to Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) by offering $547 million in funding to cover the woes BPL hopes to cure with its rate reduction bond (RRB), with $12 million to spare.

WMS has pledged to work with whomever wins in the general election on Thursday. 

“With WMS’s support, the government would also be better equipped to respond to the growing labor disputes across local industries,” the statement read.

“Beyond energy, WMS recognizes the need for swift, effective change in the areas of public health and labor struggles.

“WMS is looking forward to the results of this year’s general election and ultimately working with whichever administration is to be installed. All in all, this company is committed to bettering the lives of Bahamians with innovative and modern solutions. A deal with WMS is guaranteed to directly benefit Bahamians and their economy.”

The company said it has approached successive governments with its plans, and those attempts have proven “fruitless”.

The company’s principals have contended for years that BPL has ignored some of the best solutions in past bid requests.

BPL is currently hoping to have its RRB financed by the end of the year. That money will go to more infrastructural development in the power production side that Shell is expected to take over when that deal is finalized.

Shell and BPL have been locked in negotiations for about three years, with BPL continuing to maintain that it is attempting to secure the best deal for Bahamians.

Shell is expected to bring liquid natural gas (LNG) to The Bahamas, but WMS said its company can provide new fuel technology along the lines of LNG, called compressed gas liquid (CGL), for far cheaper.

The company maintains that it has the best future power solution for The Bahamas that comes with debt-free financing.

“After years of unreliable, costly energy service and failing power distribution, WMS wants to support BPL in ensuring residents and business owners no longer have to worry about such deficiencies,” the company’s statement read.

“BPL’s proposed RRB promises to increase consumer rates and pull the power company into further debt.

“WMS has proposed $547 million in debt-free funding to cover the cost of the RRB. The amount goes above and beyond BPL’s proposed funding requirements by an additional $12 million.

“This 100 percent Bahamian-owned company also has the means to transform energy in The Bahamas with a new natural gas liquid fuel technology known as compressed gas liquid (CGL). If brought to the nation, it would reduce the price of fuel and, consequently, consumer rates significantly.”

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Chester Robards

Chester Robards rejoined The Nassau Guardian in November 2017 as a senior business reporter. He has covered myriad topics and events for The Nassau Guardian. Education: Florida International University, BS in Journalism

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