Generators in Baysour, Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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Nearly 25 years after the Civil War ended, the state-owned electricity company, Electricite du Liban, is still unable to keep the lights on around the clock, despite promises by successive governments to provide a constant supply.In certain mountain villages, however, residents are oblivious to all that ruckuss, thanks to a winning collaboration between private entrepreneurs and municipalities.A few years back, most residents and institutions in Barouk – as in most of Lebanon – had private generators to secure a continuous supply of electricity, as EDL power was sometimes cut off for several days in a row.According to municipality officials, almost all of Barouk now relies on electricity supplies from private businesses, with monthly bills that are markedly less expensive than those from EDL.Hayek argued that the energy sector should be reformed before private investments are encouraged, referring to the energy privatization law 462 of 2002, which calls for corporatizing EDL and establishing an Electricity Regulatory Authority that would be tasked with setting the criteria for power production, issuing official licenses and overseeing production by the private sector.
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