On Monday, Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre announced a plan to help vulnerable Saint Lucians cope with anticipated increases in the price of electricity due to hikes in the cost of fuel.
Pierre, responsible for Finance, told reporters that disadvantaged individuals, people who have no income, and those who are unemployed would benefit.
“The government has initiated a social security fund,” the Castries East MP told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of the cabinet.
And he explained that the fund would support the vulnerable according to their needs.
Pierre said there would be a process through the Saint Lucia Social Development Fund (SSDF) regarding accessing funds.
“They will know as soon as this budget is over,” he revealed.
The St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) announced in a release Friday that despite its fuel-price hedging programme and renewable energy efforts, the sharp hike in oil prices would increase the fuel surcharge for electricity bills.
Prime Minister Pierre remarked that the answer to the problem includes less dependence on fossil fuels.
“We have to plunge deeper into renewable energy,” he observed.
In this regard, Pierre said the government is pursuing a review of the Electricity Supply Act.
“That should happen very soon,” he observed, adding that as a result, the use of renewable energy would temper the cost of electricity.