– still in talks with Banks DIHAs the Guyana Power and Light (GPL) continues to grapple with the challenges of providing reliable electricity, Government has cleared the way for the power company to buy power from Giftland.Last week, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GPL, Albert Gordon had disclosed at a press conference that they are in talks with both Giftland and Banks DIH Limited to buy power from them to boost the capacity of the interconnected system. The two entities are powering their own operations using heavy fuel oil and have substantial capacity.To this end, Cabinet was briefed on the matter and Director General at the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon disclosed on Friday that the agreement with at least one of the companies is ready.“The power purchase agreement with Giftland was finalised and is to be submitted to the Board of the Guyana Power and Light for approval on Monday, June 17,” Harmon told reporters at the post-Cabinet press conference.Since 2016, Giftland Mall had offered to sell Government its excess electricity but this was rejected. However, at last week’s press conference, the GPL CEO had explained that buying power from an independent power producer (IPP) is a complicated issue which includes negotiating pricing and legal matters. To this end, he noted that GPL has enlisted the help of the Public Infrastructure Ministry to iron out these issues.With regards to the deal with Bank DIH Limited, it was revealed on Friday that discussions are still ongoing with the local beverage giant but there is an issue regarding the availability of the excess power.Gordon had explained that “For Banks, I think they have installed approximately 10 megawatts. But they normally use most of their power during the day. Even in peak, they normally have an excess… But also, they run their generators during the period we want the power. So, the amount we’d get from them isn’t very significant. Nevertheless, we want to interconnect; the system works better when we’re interconnected. There may be times we’ll sell to them and there’ll be times we will buy from them.”GPL is looking to source some five megawatts of electricity during peaks hours from both Giftland Mall and Banks DIH.Harmon had explained at Friday’s post-Cabinet press briefing that sourcing power from independent power producers is among a series of steps being undertaken by GPL as corrective measures to bring relief to citizens.In separate incidents, two submarine cables of the power company were recently damaged resulting in increased power outages and load shedding activities.However, with the main submarine cable replaced across the Demerara River to link the Vreed-en-hoop and Kingston substations, the Director General noted that power supply has been restored with less load shedding activities.But Harmon noted that due to the reduced load on the Vreed-en-Hoop system, which is now isolated, it is less stable and there have been some unplanned outages in areas still supplied by this station such as the West Bank and the West Coast of Demerara.“But that is not going to last for a long time,” he assured.While GPL is looking to increase the capacity on the interconnected grid with the purchase of fuel oil power from private firms, the company is also catering to have natural gas integrated into its system to produce electricity.In fact, Gordon had mentioned that they were seeking an agreement for the purchase of power from the Hope Wind Farm project, which is expected to come on stream by next year generating between 10 to 16 megawatts of power.Months after taking office in 2015, Government had announced that it would facilitate a US$50 million, 25-megawatt wind farm project at Hope Beach on the East Coast of Demerara.The Alliance For Change (AFC) subsequently identified International Pharmaceutical Agency (IPA) proprietor Lloyd Singh, an investor in the wind farm, as responsible for the party’s acquisition of its multimillion-dollar headquarters in February of 2016.While not as stable as hydropower, wind energy generated by turbines is a form of renewable energy. But the Hope Beach Wind Farm project, at 25 MW, is still no match for the proposed Amaila Falls Hydro Project initiated under the previous Administration and was continually blocked by the APNU/AFC coalition while controlling the National Assembly by a one-seat Opposition majority.The AFHP would have assisted GPL in getting adequate electricity supply. In fact, the Norway-funded project, when completed, would have provided 165 megawatts to the national grid, thus providing cheaper and more reliable power to citizens and businesses.