1 March 2013

Somalia: Private Electricity Companies Increase Prices in Hargeisa

Privately owned electricity companies in Hargeisa have increased the price of the services they offer to the public by 20%.

"Electricity companies have been struggling with the rising fuel costs, and now fuel has increased again. That has put a heavy burden on us," Abdi Ali Barkhad, the companies' spokesperson in Hargeisa, said Tuesday (February 26th).

He accused companies that supply fuel to Somaliland of supplying low-quality fuel and not following international fuel pricing standards.

Most of the private companies that supply electricity are owned by Kaah, which supplies most of the public's electricity. The state-owned company, however, has few customers.

On Wednesday, Somaliland regional Minister of Commerce Abdirisaq Khalif Ahmed said the cost of fuel has gone up 10%, which is not enough to increase the cost of electricity. "They are supposed to be lenient on the people," he said.

Nonetheless, he said fuel scarcity cannot be ignored, as the port of Berbera has denied entry to three ships carrying low quality fuel in the last few weeks. A large quantity of fuel will be imported in the coming weeks, which will restore the price of electricity, Ahmed said.

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