7 May 2004

Fiji gives state guarantee to proposed power company

4:33 pm on 7 May 2004

The Fiji government has agreed to give a state guarantee for a loan of 32-million US dollars to a proposed electricity company despite strong objections.

The objections come from the opposition leader, Mick Beddoes, and the Fiji Labour Party.

Both said the government did not give enough information about the Pacific Co-generation Company which will produce electric power for sale to the state-owned Fiji Electricity Authority.

Pacific Co-generation will be jointly owned by the technically bankrupt Fiji Sugar Corporation and the French company, SIDEC.

It will produce electricity by burning bagasse, the residue from cane after sugar juice is extracted, and burning wood chips and coal during the off season.