Home to around 42 million people and 28 island nations and territories; the Caribbean has a hard time competing for resources on the global stage. Yet, this region of the world is a veritable microcosm of the many challenges and opportunities facing the wider world. No area of the Caribbean economy highlights this more than the challenge of energy security. Powering an island economy involves a complex and in many ways antiquated supply chain of diesel fuels and petroleum products to keep aging turbines whirling. The majority of Caribbean electric utilities are state-owned enterprises (SOEs), increasing the pressure to keep these public services as a part of the electoral apparatus, rather than reforming them to become more efficient and cost effective for the public – an objective that is understandably hindered by the limited purchasing power individual islands enjoy and the geographic inability to form energy blocs or build interconnected power grids.
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