Store Closed Due to Power Outage (sign)

The Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce (PRCC) requested an urgent meeting with the chair of the Governing Board of the Electric Power Authority (PREPA), Ralph A. Kreil Rivera, to discuss the consequences of the selective power outages on the island's economic development.

Luis Gierbolini, the president of the PRCC, which represents the island's private sector, also wants to discuss the energy rate hike for the commercial sector.

"We are greatly concerned about what is happening on the island with the selective blackouts and a request for an increase in the electric power service, due to the instability that this represents in the environment of doing business in Puerto Rico. The high energy cost for merchants makes it unfeasible to maintain a solid operation and adversely affects the viability of our jurisdiction as an optimal place to do business," Gierbolini said.

He said that "these actions harm the industries, the medium and small merchants because they add unexpected and unbudgeted costs to the business operation. There are no real alternatives to help trade in Puerto Rico, this means paying more for energy, investing in power plants with the associated costs, and evaluating renewable energy alternatives."

"We are going to do everything in our power as a union to combat an unexpected spike in energy costs. It is evident that this makes services more expensive and at the end of the day will cause the closure of workshops and an increase in consumer prices. Our call is that a coherent action plan be established that helps the country's entrepreneurs and positions Puerto Rico as a point of economic development," Gierbolini added.-

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