Panama seeks consultant for rural program including small hydro

Panama’s Office of Rural Electrification invites expressions of interest from consultants to evaluate rural electrification projects in a program that could include small hydropower projects. Responses are due May 25.

The government received a US$30 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) to finance the program. (HNN 2/23/07) IADB previously said the program would promote public and private investment to serve 30,000 rural households, increasing rural electricity coverage by 10 percent.

The program is to include a system of subsidies for new investments that are to motivate private enterprises to invest in rural electrification, either through grid extension or renewable energy projects in isolated areas. Among eligible renewable energy projects are small hydroelectric, wind, and solar facilities, IADB said.

The Office of Rural Electrification seeks consultants to build a database of investment costs for rural electrification work and to calculate and negotiate subsidies for projects. Additionally, the consultant is to identify individual eligible projects and help develop contracts between project operators and electricity distributors. Budget for the work is US$400,000 for the first 12 months with an option for extension.

Expressions of interest and qualifications are due May 25 by sealed envelope or electronic mail to the address below. For information, contact Director Ejecutivo Jose Alexander Rodriguez, Oficina de Electrificacion Rural, San Felipe, Av. Eloy Alfaro, entre Calle 7 y 8, Edificio La Mercedes, Segundo Piso, Ciudad de Panama, Panama; (507) 5079322; Fax: (507) 5278115; E-mail:

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