Electrification: A dream against the current for shrimp industry in Ecuador

Updated Nov 21, 2022
In recent years, each government on duty has admitted how advantageous it can be for Ecuador, in terms of efficiency and profitability, to get its shrimp industry, the largest source of export currency, to replace the use of diesel with electricity. The plan consists of agreements, conventions, resolutions and rules that aim for the country to take advantage of a $200 million loan that CAF approved in 2019 for that purpose, but which to this day remain unused. A third extension for its use is due to expire in December.
The plan to go towards a change of matrix began in 2017 with an agreement between the Ministry of Energy and the National Electricity Corporation (CNEL) to invest in infrastructure that allows the expansion of power lines to rural areas where the shrimp pools are. Although the project was advancing between studies and procedures, says José Antonio Camposano, president of the National Chamber of Aquaculture (CNA), since 2019 he has had the first major obstacle that until today he has not been able to unleash: the definition of the authorities so that a state entity assumes as guarantor of the CAF loan. CNEL had been the entity in charge of signing the contract, but, since the previous Government, the Ministry of Finance has been dragging the issue and postponing the issuance of a sovereign guarantee, this due to the apparent inability of CNEL to pay the loan. At the national level there are 220,000 hectares of shrimp, of which, the CNA estimates, only 5% have managed to use energy. ...
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