CDB sees sustainable energy as a necessity for Caribbean Development

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – The President of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Dr Gene Leon, has cited the transition to sustainable energy a critical imperative for regional development.

“Our development in the region must be seen from a holistic perspective and, perhaps more than anywhere else in the world, a sustainable energy transition is one of our most important transgenerational obligations,” said Dr Leon at the Turks and Caicos Energy Forum in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, on Thursday.

Leon also said that although alternative forms of energy, especially solar, wind, and ocean resources are in unlimited
supply in the region, the Caribbean is one of the most energy import-dependent regions in the world with CDB’s 19 Borrowing Member States, deriving more than 90% of their commercial energy supply from imported petroleum. At the same time, the price of electricity in the region is among the highest in the world, averaging US$0.28 per kilowatt hour in 2019.


To make the transition to sustainable energy a reality, the CDB President laid out five priorities for the way forward, which are improving energy efficiency, diversifying energy sources, incentivising the private sector, investing in strategic partnerships, and using innovative, flexible, and affordable financing instruments.

Dr Leon called for encouraging and incentivising the private sector to support the transition to sustainable energy. “With limited fiscal space available to governments, the private sector must play a leading role in driving this transition”.

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