Wed | Jun 19, 2019

Wind farm saves Jamaica US$54M on oil imports, says Energy Minister

Published:Sunday | April 14, 2019 | 1:34 PM
Minister of Energy Fayval Williams addresses potential investors during the Wigton Windfarm Limited's Initial Public Offering (IPO) Investor Briefing, held at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St James on Friday.

Energy Minister Fayval Williams says Wigton Windfarm Limited has saved the Government over US$54 million on oil imports.

According to the energy minister, the production of clean energy from the facility has enabled the country to avoid the purchase of 800,000 barrels of oil, and the emission of one million tons of carbon dioxide, thereby reducing the country’s carbon footprint.

She was speaking at Wigton Windfarm’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) Investor Briefing, held at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St James on Friday.

Wigton, located in Rose Hill, South Manchester, is the largest wind energy facility in the English-speaking Caribbean.

The company, which is a subsidiary of the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ), began operating in 2004 with the commissioning of a 20.7 megawatt-generating plant, Wigton I.

This was followed by the development of Wigton II in 2010, which generates 18 megawatts of energy. Wigton III, the 24-megawatt expansion of the facility, was officially commissioned into service in June 2016 by Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness.

Williams commended the company for the progress made since its inception and lauded the IPO as a “bold strategy”.

“Today, we commence a new phase in the company’s history with this IPO. This is indeed a bold and strategic move. I can say that I am truly pleased with the strides that Wigton has made over these years,” she pointed out.

“The growth in (renewable energy) globally, will undoubtedly bring greater investment opportunities in the future for a company like Wigton and we want Jamaica to be a part of this growing global movement in an even greater way. I believe we have the will and the capacity, and as a Government, we are putting the plans in place to ensure that we maximise our renewable energy potential,” the energy minister added.

Jamaicans will have the opportunity to purchase shares in Wigton when the IPO opens on April 17 and closes on May 1.

 A total of 11 billion shares at 0.50 cents each are being offered with 2.2 billion shares reserved for public sector workers. The Government is seeking to raise $5.5 billion from the sale.

Once listed on the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE), Wigton will be the second energy-related company on the market.

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