Dominica: Prime Minister of Dominica Roosevelt Skerrit, in his weekly programmme of ‘ ANNOU PALE,’ discussed foreign policy with the ambassador of Dominica in the United States & to the organization of American states OS Dr. Vince Henderson.
Answering to the question of the Prime Minister, Dr. Henderson started his talk about telling how he spent his last COVID-19 year time.
He said that apart from COVID, he was quite busy working on geothermal energy & also he was practicing his legal job. He also gave time to time advice to the Dominican government on various issues.
Talking about the effect of COVID, Dr. Henderson said,” COVID has affected everyone in the world, of course. One thing I have got my fear is one thing, it has kept me away from Dominica , which has been unfortunate. “
He further added, “It is also again causing me to pivot from traveling to do some of the work that I have to do, especially negotiations with our partners revert into using virtual connections , meetings and of course like everyone, I am also suffering from the zoom fatigue. “
He said that most of the works he has been doing for, whether Geothermal negotiations OAS meetings engagements of the US can all be conducted virtually.
He also revealed about the Dominica Geothermal projects; he said, “Twice the funds of the grant of we secured & world bank concession alone. We engaged advisers from Iceland, Italy, we engaged prospectives and developers & discussion on how we could move forward & that was a way of doing all market.
He added,” We discussed the options with partners because we had to grant money from the UK, so we wanted to ensure that they continue to support the project & we prepared a new roadmap for the development of geothermal in the Rosa valley to minimize the risk to reduce the project cost & the to maximize the output of the Geothermal plant.”
“To accelerate the work towards the development of a larger plan for export of power to enable infringed territories of so that took us some time as you are aware & to approval on a new road map and new design & the new partners that we brought on so that right now we are an advance stage of implementation of geothermal project & associated projects also it is a very exciting opportunity for Dominica. ” Dr. Vince Henderson noted.
He also said that we have lots of potentials in this project and a capacity to generate 120 MW electricity in Roseau Valley; we can provide five times more than of needs. Still, we have to utilize our resources & we have to consider the export so that Dominica has done pretty well in exploration & we are sure that we have the results; we have proven it.
Emphasizing the cost that Dominica has to spent on this project, Dr. Vince Henderson said we have invested about 25 million dollars today & were generous enough to make most of the funds available, but fortunately able to mobilize a lot of these funds from grants. So we have actually spent is maybe 5 million from US & local funds.
He notified that in this project, we have put five million for the acquisition of lands for the operations of the geothermal company & we would expect the rest of the funds from actual projects will come from our partners will be bringing in about 25 million dollars in equity & balance of the funds would get from lenders such as the world bank , UK, & also from Caribbean development bank, American development bank.
He also assured that Dominica does not have to worry about money because we have already made that upfront investment & we already have lands that contribute to the projects. Dominica only has to think about the maintenance of the geothermal company.