Electricité du Liban (EDL), the Lebanese national electricity provider, announced Thursday that it has begun issuing formal notices for electricity fee collection within Syrian refugee camps as of Monday, Nov. 27. This comes after the installation of around 900 electronic meters, as reported by the company and conveyed by the National News Agency (NNA). According to the statement, the meter installations across the camps started a year ago, and future plans include outfitting the remaining camps with similar devices.
The utility's enforcement teams have calculated the amounts owed based on the electrical consumption of these camps. So far, 110 citations have been issued across various locations, with fee collection anticipated to commence this week, the statement emphasized.
The initiatives by EDL are in line with the national electricity emergency plan and the decisions made by the Council of Ministers and EDL’s own board of directors. Prior to taking action, all relevant authorities were notified in writing of these measures.
A ministerial committee formed on Jan. 18 with the goal of ensuring the effective implementation of the emergency power plan—aimed at increasing the electricity supply hours provided by EDL—met on Nov. 1 and discussed the issue of bill payments by the refugees. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have declined to pay these bills. EDL's Director-General Kamal Hayek reportedly requested the assistance of security forces and the army to facilitate the collections in the camps.