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Falklands' Stanley Services celebrates 20th anniversary

Wednesday, February 13th 2008 - 20:00 UTC
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The evolution of fuel supplier SSL has been crucial for the development of the Islands The evolution of fuel supplier SSL has been crucial for the development of the Islands

A fuel supplier and freight company vital to the development of the Falkland Islands over the last two decades celebrates its twentieth anniversary since inauguration this year.

Stanley Services Limited, 45% owned by the islands government, has exclusive rights to civilian fuel supply and also provides bunkering services to shipping in Falklands waters. The exclusivity of the arrangement has always been a sensitive subject in the Islands but in a book written by Peter George, promoting the anniversary, and recording the company's history, he writes, "Perhaps the most contentious aspect of the entire contract was 'exclusivity'. One reason why the invitation to tender had been issued to overseas companies in the first place was the palpable need for investment in the new facilities – investment at a level which would be very substantial in Falklands terms. "The tender rehearsed four options for long term fuel supply, three of which would involve costly new facilities; the one that did not was clearly unacceptable and included only to show that it was. It was made clear then that such investment in such a market at such a state of development could only be made if there were some prospect of a return and that could only be the case if FIG granted the investing company exclusive rights." Due to the set up, a price control mechanism for domestic sales endures. The original company shareholding comprised 45% FIG, 30% Hogg Robinson and 25% S&JDR, but in 2005 became: Lavinia 25%, FIG 45% and S&JDR 30%. At the same time, a new Falklands company was established called Stanley Bunkering Ltd. a joint venture between Lavinia and SSL. Early important moments in SSL existence were the declaration of the Falklands Interim Conservation and Management Zone, which made the provision of bunkers within it a more interesting prospect and allowed FIG to take control of its resources and tap the new source of revenue. Also FIG was able to acquire FIPASS (the floating dock at East Stanley) from the UK Ministry of Defence. This was of significance to the embryo SSL because of the need to invest in new facilities, the location of which would require access by sea. Stanley Services now have a modern fuel station on the south side of central Stanley and their depot is situated close to FIPASS. Islanders have benefited from a number of additions to the company including the establishment of the dealership of Mitsubishi. Mitsubishi Pajeros are now a common sight on the streets of Stanley, rivalling the popularity of the Land Rover 4wd. In 2004 the company bought Malvina House Hotel from Mike and Phyl Rendell. This was followed by a major refurbishment and the addition of the first solar panels in the Falklands in 2006. The book 'Twenty years of Stanley Services by Peter George' is to be given to all Stanley Services Customers when it arrives in the Islands. Tom Swales Managing Director of SSL notes "â€Â¦that it is a very brief, concise and well written history of a Company that has played a major part in the economic development of the Islands over the past twenty years". By Lisa Johnston SeAled PR Stanley

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