The Minister of Energy and Mines, Antonio Almonte Reynoso, clarified this morning that neither President Luis Abinader nor the ministry he directs have made a single formal proposal on putting the Punta Catalina Thermoelectric Plant in the hands of the private sector.
When participating as a guest in the television program Uno más Uno, Almonte pointed out that there is not a single speech, a single proposal or a document where the Government has planted the sale of the work.
“By the way, the final acceptance of plant number one has not yet been made, which should be done in the course of this month, depending on the discussions we have, and plant number two is supposed to be finalized in April. next year, which implies accepting what the contractor built ”.
He said that the position that he has always held is that the Dominican State would be better off maintaining the properties of Punta Catalina, surrendering to a private firm for operation and maintenance, and thus be able to guarantee its proper functioning.
“This is not an ideological problem, this is a problem that is associated with the changes that can be made at the level of economic crisis and fiscal crisis. At a certain moment it could be that the Dominican Government, to save itself from a major economic crisis, which generates a negative impact on the population, better consider selling a part of Punta Catalina ”, he said.
He said that in the end, what the State has to guarantee is transparency in this process and access to energy at a relatively reasonable price for the population and guarantee the economic stability of the country.
Hiring of international firms
Almonte indicated that they have started the process to contract an international firm that will carry out three audits on Punta Catalina.
“A financial audit of the construction will be done to determine the total investment made by the Dominican people in the Central; a technical audit will be carried out to ascertain the technical and functional conditions of the two plants and an audit will also be carried out on relevant aspects of the economic evolution process that gave rise to the $ 1,945 million contract ”, he said during the program .
He added that this means that before selling to Punta Catalina, in the event that it is decided to do so, that process must be completed, which will take a long time.
About the liquidation of the CDEEE
Of the liquidation process of the Dominican Corporation of State Electric Companies (CDEEE), Almonte said that they are speeding up the work between January and February to announce to the country the elimination of the
He explained that, in addition to reducing economic expenses to the State, it will limit the intermediation of energy producers and distributors, having the Government as a regulatory entity through the Superintendence of Electricity and the Ministry of Energy and Mines.
The official said that the main objective of President Abinader in creating 10 sectoral cabinets, including the electricity one, is to try to promote cohesion and coordination between the different State entities that do work within the same area.
He recalled that Law 142-14 establishes that the National Energy Commission and the General Mining Directorate must be absorbed by the Ministry of Energy and Mines so that this is the only entity in the public sector that carries out these two activities.