Power cuts hit banking services in Daru

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The Daru branch of BSP Financial Group Limited has been closed for the past two days due to continuous and continuous power outages in the township.

The bank is back in operation after being closed on Monday and Tuesday this week due to a fuel supply shortage in Western Province affecting the township’s PNG power supply.

In a statement, BSP said that although the bank has a standby generator, this generator has been unable to cope with the additional demands of continuous and extended periods of power generation.

BSP Group Retail General Manager Daniel Faunt said a diesel drum cost about K11,000 in Daru, other centers would have different fuel prices due to the current increase, with the problem of continuous power cuts, a diesel drum would last three days, including nights.

The total fuel cost to keep the bank operational would be 11,000K.
Mr. Faunt said that apart from the Daru branch, other branches in the southern region including BSP Alotau, BSP Tari, BSP Moro, BSP Popondetta continue to face insufficient power supply during the day. .

He said the estimated cost of maintaining fuel stock to keep the generator running to keep the bank operational is between K3,000-5,000 per month.

“Management has been advised that PNG Power Limited (PPL) will restore power supply imminently to enable the Bank to reopen for business on (Wednesday 4th May 2022).

BSP is however taking steps to identify alternative energy sources to enable it to continue to provide services to its customers.

“Positioning itself to accommodate and absorb these unfortunate and increasingly frequent extended power outages in Daru in the future, BSP is currently shipping a new generator for the BSP Daru branch to maintain banking services in the township,” said declared Mr. Faunt.

He said the new Cummins 90kVA generator which cost BSP K250,000 will replace the old Cummins 65kVA which will now be put on standby once the new generator is installed.

“A larger generator has become necessary given the continuous and frequent power cuts that have been evident in Daru and other parts of PNG.”

BSP Group Chief Executive Robin Fleming said: “While we regret to inform the public of our decision to close our doors over the past 2 days due to the PNG Power outages and generator instability back-up, electricity is essential for banking operations.

“The continuing outages have disrupted normal business operations, affecting vital services to people and communities in Western Province.

“Recent unexpected outages have prevented customers and businesses from transacting or inquiring with the branch.”

BSP apologizes for the inconvenience and encourages customers in Western Province to use digital banking platforms – Mobile Banking and Internet Banking for a safer and more convenient experience.

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