$500 million Investment plan for Electricity in the Solomon Islands

The country’s only electricity provider – Solomon Islands Electricity Authority (SIEA) is set to improve its power supply services through a five years investment plan worth $500million.

This was revealed by the authority’s general manager Norman Nicholls yesterday while responding to concerns raised by a community in Gizo seeking power supply to their area.

Mr Nicholls told the Solomon Star that some of SIEA’s long term plans have been hindered by the past financial constraints faced by the company over the past two decades.

And this had denied them (SIEA) from pursuing some of its major investment plans in Honiara and around the country.

“As you will be aware, SIEA has been in a difficult financial situation for the past 20 years and has been unable to make any significant capital investments.”

But he assured the country that this problem of power outage and lack of power supply to some areas are over soon with a huge undertaking to invest more into these areas.

“However that situation has now changed and we are embarking on a major capital investment programme in both Honiara and our outstations, such as Gizo.

“This programme is most extensive, costing over $500m, and it will take place over the next 5 years.”

He pointed out that once this programme is under way some areas which does not have power supplies will be able to enjoy the service.

Not only that but this investment is expected to reduce power blackouts in the city and other out-stations in the country.

The New Zealander came in some three years ago under a World Bank funded project called Solomon Islands Sustainable Energy Project (SISEP) and helped to lift the authority out of its woes.

At that time SIEA was in a financial mess and he had to work hard in cleaning it up and made reforms.

Solomon Star
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