This island???s Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Christopher Sinckler, has described the alternative energy sector as ???absolutely critical??? to the development of Barbados.

And, Mr. Sinckler expressed Government???s commitment to the sector yesterday, while delivering the feature address at The Productivity Council???s one-day summit at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre.

Acknowledging that a new economic sector had to be carefully planned and properly executed, he said Government had been working assiduously behind the scenes to ensure the policy framework for alternative energy was clearly written.

???No legislation, no policy or no framework is perfect at the start. We seek perfection, but we work towards it and we achieve it eventually if we work hard enough. And while there might be a small flaw here and a small flaw there in the legislation, our job is to identify what those flaws are and try to change them as we go on, and I encourage our sector players to do that as well,??? he stressed.

The Minister disclosed that the legislation required to allow for the generation of alternative energy was ready and it would be debated in Parliament during the first week of November. He added that the Electric Light and Power Act and the incentives which he announced in last year???s budget would also be debated.

???With those [pieces of legislation] in place, it means we [would] now have a platform on which we can move to create a genuine alternative energy sector in Barbados,??? he remarked.

He stressed, however, that Government???s job was to ensure that traditional electricity and alternative generation of energy could co-exist to the benefit of Barbados. ???We can create jobs, we can have new investment and of course we can??bring down the cost of energy in Barbados and make businesses more competitive and households more comfortable in relation to the price that they pay for energy,??? he said.

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