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Friday, August 29 2014 @ 02:20 PM EDT

Bill Regulating Electricity Market Passed - Without Controversial Articles

Law & LawyersThe full National Assembly approved this Wednesday, August 1, in third debate Bill No. 486, which amends the articles of Law No. 6 of 3 February 1997, which regulates the provision of electric utilities. Amendments to Law No. 6 were submitted by the Ministry of the Presidency to the Committee on Trade and Economic Affairs on 7 June 2012. This statute, which was unanimously adopted, seeks to improve the electricity market in the country. Bill No. 486 provides that the Panamanian government has an obligation to establish rules that encourage investment in the electricity sector for public service. Moreover, these incentives must result in the best interest of the Panamanians, since this is the primary purpose of the regulation of the local electricity market, according to the document.

This Bill was what caused the controversy during the recent special sessions held during 18 and 19 June 2012. The controversy arose because - at the last minute - several articles were added that would have allowed the government to sell state owned shares in the electricity companies on the Panama Stock Exchange. However, after the President of the Republic, Ricardo Martinelli, said the shares would not be sold, the controversial articles were removed from Bill No. 486. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: Unanimously passed? Really?

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