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Working towards a more efficient, diversified and sustainable energy sector

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To promote diversification with renewable energies, expand the country’s electricity supply and reduce
losses in the distribution network are some of the government’s main goals.

The Dominican Republic is determined to have an energy transformation. To start, the country has committed to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by a third in accordance to UN’s 2030 development goals, since more than 71% of the electrical power generation depends on coal and natural gas. Those goals are in line with president Luis Abidaner’s diversification of the country’s energy matrix with cleaner technologies, a strategy that aims to increase the sector’s competitiveness.

To achieve this, the government is supporting a new law project that will modify the 2007 Renewable Energy Incentives Law, restoring to 75% the level of fiscal credit for investments in renewable energies. “This new regulation will allow the energy trading contracts to be bid for competitively”, says Minister of Energy and Mines Mr. Antonio Almonte Reynoso. With this adjustment, they expect to reach their goal of increasing the contribution of renewable energy sources in electricity generation to at least 25% by 2030.

Similarly, as part of its “Zero Bureaucracy” program, the government is committed to increasing transparency and speed in the process of granting permits for renewable energy investments. Since the Ministry started handing facilities to national and foreign investors for the installation of solar parks and wind farms, seven energy trading contracts have been signed, with five more wind power energy deals to be closed in the coming weeks.

On the other hand, several efforts have been made to increase the efficiency and coverage of the country’s electric power system. On February 2021, the government signed the Electricity Pact, a structural reform that aims to reduce losses in the distribution network, promote the financial reliability of energy distributors and improve competitiveness and quality of life. They are also working on the expansion of the electric power system, which is expected to be ready by 2023.

So far, most sustainable energy projects have come from private or private-public partnerships. CEPM, the Consorcio Energético Punta Cana–Macao, a privately owned utility company that provides energy to more than 65% of the country’s touristic sector, has contributed significantly. In 2011, CEPM inaugurated the first 8.25 MW wind farm in the country, and two years later their international parent company InterEnergy Holdings (IEH) obtained a USD $100 million equity investment from World Bank Group’s IFC to develop cleaner and more efficient energy sources. Last year, they converted three major 730 MW electric plants fueled by diesel to natural gas, adding an extra contribution to the country’s transition to cleaner energies.

Together with the Ministry of Environment, CEPM plans to install last generation solar panels and batteries to cover 100% of the electricity needs of the 800 inhabitants of Isla Saona, with an initial investment of USD $10 million. CEPM is also committed to sustainable mobility. They have installed over 300 units of state-of-the-art electric vehicle charging stations nationwide and started converting their own fleet, which they expect to be 100% electric by the end of the year.

To guarantee the continuity of this process, the government is actively seeking private investors interested on renewable energy initiatives, electrical power generation and distribution, and/or system maintenance projects. As Minister Almonte states, “the only way to move forward and continue strengthening the energy sector is through capital investment by the private sector. Investments that promote technological changes will lead to the generation of electricity and the use of renewable resources. Because of the country’s potential, there are great opportunities for everyone to win.”

Innovative and efficient mining adding shared value to the Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is determined to have an energy transformation. To start, the country has committed to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by a third in accordance to UN’s 2030 development goals, since more than 71% of the electrical power generation depends on coal and natural gas. Those goals are in line with president Luis Abidaner’s diversification of the country’s energy matrix with cleaner technologies, a strategy that aims to increase the sector’s competitiveness.

To achieve this, the government is supporting a new law project that will modify the 2007 Renewable Energy Incentives Law, restoring to 75% the level of fiscal credit for investments in renewable energies. “This new regulation will allow the energy trading contracts to be bid for competitively”, says Minister of Energy and Mines Mr. Antonio Almonte Reynoso. With this adjustment, they expect to reach their goal of increasing the contribution of renewable energy sources in electricity generation to at least 25% by 2030.

Similarly, as part of its “Zero Bureaucracy” program, the government is committed to increasing transparency and speed in the process of granting permits for renewable energy investments. Since the Ministry started handing facilities to national and foreign investors for the installation of solar parks and wind farms, seven energy trading contracts have been signed, with five more wind power energy deals to be closed in the coming weeks.

On the other hand, several efforts have been made to increase the efficiency and coverage of the country’s electric power system. On February 2021, the government signed the Electricity Pact, a structural reform that aims to reduce losses in the distribution network, promote the financial reliability of energy distributors and improve competitiveness and quality of life. They are also working on the expansion of the electric power system, which is expected to be ready by 2023.

So far, most sustainable energy projects have come from private or private-public partnerships. CEPM, the Consorcio Energético Punta Cana–Macao, a privately owned utility company that provides energy to more than 65% of the country’s touristic sector, has contributed significantly. In 2011, CEPM inaugurated the first 8.25 MW wind farm in the country, and two years later their international parent company InterEnergy Holdings (IEH) obtained a USD $100 million equity investment from World Bank Group’s IFC to develop cleaner and more efficient energy sources. Last year, they converted three major 730 MW electric plants fueled by diesel to natural gas, adding an extra contribution to the country’s transition to cleaner energies.

Together with the Ministry of Environment, CEPM plans to install last generation solar panels and batteries to cover 100% of the electricity needs of the 800 inhabitants of Isla Saona, with an initial investment of USD $10 million. CEPM is also committed to sustainable mobility. They have installed over 300 units of state-of-the-art electric vehicle charging stations nationwide and started converting their own fleet, which they expect to be 100% electric by the end of the year.

To guarantee the continuity of this process, the government is actively seeking private investors interested on renewable energy initiatives, electrical power generation and distribution, and/or system maintenance projects. As Minister Almonte states, “the only way to move forward and continue strengthening the energy sector is through capital investment by the private sector. Investments that promote technological changes will lead to the generation of electricity and the use of renewable resources. Because of the country’s potential, there are great opportunities for everyone to win.”

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