New company to provide Lebanon's Tripoli with 24-hour electricity
Former Prime Minister Najib Mikati announced Friday the creation of an independent electricity company in Tripoli in a bid to provide 24 hours of electricity to the city and adjacent areas. Speaking at a news conference with the head of Tripoli municipality Amer Rifai, Mikati said the name of the firm would be “Nour al-Fayhaa.”
He added that MPs Mohammad Safadi and Ahmad Karami expressed support to the formation of the electricity company.
Mikati said that he sent a letter to the prime minister’s office requesting approval for the creation of the electricity company in Tripoli.
“The main purpose of this private company is to provide electricity 24 hours a day.
This area has been deprived of many things,” he told reporters.
Mikati did not give further details about the new company but promised the rates charged on consumers would be appropriate.
In May investors proposed to finance, build and operate small power plants in various Lebanese regions.
But some investors were not upbeat about the chances of approval from the cabinet.
This impression was echoed by Francois Bassil, the chairman of Byblos Bank, who submitted a proposal to the government early this year to build and operate a 64 MW plant for Jbeil at a cost of $68.5 million.
“This project, if approved by the Cabinet, will be sufficient to supply all the towns and villages of Jbeil with electricity 24 hours a day,” Bassil said.
He added the investors were willing to increase the capacity to 200 MW if the need arose.
Societe Electricite de Jbeil has a license from the government under a concession agreement to buy electricity from EDL at reduced rates and collect bills from the area.
EDJ also has concession rights to generate and distribute electricity within Jbeil and its vicinity.
Zahle Electricity Company has built a small power plant for the region and is supplying electricity 24 hours a day.
But critics claim Zahle did not receive a permit from EDL or the Energy Ministry to build the plant.
Experts say under Law 282, the concession firms have the right to produce and distribute electricity.