Maldives looks to renewable energy in larger islands

Energy Minister Thoriq Ibrahim has said that the increasing price of oil in the world market is contributing to increasing electricity charges, and that the government has decided to and is making preparations to provide renewable energy to the islands with larger populations to cut back on the expenses spent on oil.

While speaking on a local TV program, the Minister said that the Maldivian people had previously not experienced the rising electricity bills along with the increasing price of oil due to the large subsidies granted by the government to electricity up until last year.

However, with the cutting back on subsidies, the price of electricity has increased significantly, something which the government is trying its utmost to solve, according to the Minister.

The Minister revealed that efforts were being made to ensure that 30% of the energy used during the daytime on the islands of Maldives will be conceived through renewable means by the end of next year.

The Minister said that programs launched to predict the feasibility of using renewable energy exhibited wonderful results, and that the government is making preparations to introduce renewable energy to islands with large populations.

"To reduce costs, we have to reduce our dependency on oil, this is the reason the government has launched efforts to introduce renewable energy in the Maldives. It has become important now for there to be sustainable energy in the Maldives. Positive changes is evident in small islands which already rely on renewable energy," the Minister said.

The Minister said that a 1.7 megawatt solar panel is being built in Addu, and four other islands under the project of providing a large portion of electricity through renewable means by the end of 2018.

"We are doing our best to ensure that 30% of the daytime energy used by 2018 is renewable," the Minister stated.

The Minister also stated that the work had been tendered for solar panels to be built in all islands of Haa Alif and Haa Dhaal Atolls.