JMA partners with JPS to tailor energy solutions for the manufacturing sector

The Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association has partnered with the Jamaica Public Service Company to develop tailored energy solutions for manufacturers through energy management training, audits and recommended equipment upgrades, which according to JMA Deputy President, Metry Seaga, “will assist in enhancing the competitiveness of the sector and its footprint on the economy.”

Mr. Seaga, who was speaking at Linkage, a networking event promoting energy solutions, held at the JPS Sports Club on July 18, 2013, further stated that a “modern, efficient, diversified, environmentally sustainable energy sector providing affordable and accessible energy supplies is a 2030 Vision for Jamaica, and while we await a decision from the Government on the building of the 360 mega watt plant, we must do what is in our control, to reduce energy costs.”

“We must implement an energy conservation programme in our manufacturing operations, enhance our energy efficiency through technology, adopt alternative energy solutions to ensure long-term energy security; and explore manufacturing and assembly of renewable energy products such as solar panels,” said Mr. Seaga.

Garth McKenzie, the Director of Sales and Marketing at JPS, emphasized the importance of such partnerships while reinforcing the need for nationwide energy solutions in such tumultuous economic times. Metry Seaga added to this, reiterating that the aim must be reducing electricity rates. He said “we can no longer afford for energy costs to stymie our development as a business and as a country.”

Joan Guthrie, Business Banker Unit Team Lead of the Retail Banking Division, NCB, affirmed the financial institution’s support of energy conservation practices and more efficient use of resources. The NCB Business Grow Loan offers up to J$30 million or US$350,000, with up to 10 years to repay, to facilitate SME’s energy transformation process. The interest rate is 9.7% for up to seven years and 11% for over 7 years for energy projects. The funding is made available through the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) with up to 50% of the loan unsecured.

Manufacturers toured the JPS eStore at the Linkage with highlights being surge protectors made by local manufacturer Nicorp and the eStore Digital Timer (7 days) designed by Jamaican inventor Jackie Stewart.

Consultations will ensue with JPS to finalise the framework to ensure the successful execution of this initiative to monitor and control electricity costs, grow businesses and ultimately build a stronger nation.