On Tuesday, June 2, the Caribbean Maritime Institute (CMI) in association with its funding partner, Universal Service Fund (USF) commissioned a suite of simulators and a 125KW alternative energy system at its headquarters, Palisadoes Road.

The Simulators and the 125KW which will assist in the training needs of the Institute, were acquired at a cost of $162M. The funding which has been provided by the Universal Service Fund will enable the Institute to upgrade its facilities and generate stable and renewable energy to support the various activities which take place there.

Delivering the keynote address at the Opening Ceremony, Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Philip Paulwell said he was proud to be associated with the USF which had managed over $12B in funds and provided broad band technology. By extension, he said he was very pleased to see the funding extended to the CMI which happens to fall within his constituency. He chronicled the work of the Institute noting its rise from 200 students to the point where it now caters to over 2,000 in various disciplines.

‘The CMI has embraced the challenges of change and in that context, more is being demanded of them,” the Minister said. With the injection of funding from the USF, he said the Institute is poised to become the ‘Simulator Centre’ of the Caribbean. He added that he hoped that with the energy acquisition, the Institute would now apply for net billing and engage in the selling of (excess) power.

In extending welcome and greetings, Executive Director of the Institute, Dr. Fritz Pinnock was effusive in his thanks provided by the Universal Service Fund. He also thanked the Institute’s parent Ministry of Transport, Works 7 Housing; the Jamaica Public Service, Future Energy Corporation and the wider Port Royal community for supporting the CMI.

Senior Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Transport, Works & Housing said that the latest Initiative by the Institute ‘is yet another tick in the progress column’. Continuing, he said, “..you continue to challenge frontiers and evolve, thereby making yourselves increasingly relevant. That by any standard, is a recipe for success.”

Other presenters on the Programme included, Mr. Hugh Cross, CEO, Universal Service Fund; Mr. Steve Dixon, Director, Transmission & Distribution Asset Management, JPS; Mr Kwame Hall, Director of Operations, Future Energy Corporation; Dr. Mark Broomfield, Director, Universal Service Fund and Bishop Dr. Wellesley Blair, Chairman, Universal Service Fund who offered prayers.