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SA: Cyril Ramaphosa announces energy reforms

SA: Cyril Ramaphosa announces energy reforms
Eskom's electricity pylons snake across a hill in a Johannesburg suburb, Thursday, Nov. 24. 2011.   -  
Copyright © africanews
Denis Farrell/AP2011

South Africa

After weeks of some of the worst blackouts in recent years, President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday announced energy reforms, urging South Africans to "join in a massive rollout of rooftop solar" and sell excess to the grid. 

Addressing the nation on the energy crisis on Monday, the President addressed Eskom's difficulty to face upfront "its many challenges". The state-owned electricity utility's debt "stands at close to R400 billion".  

The head of state confirmed the National Treasury was working "to finalise a sustainable solution" to Eskom's debt. Adding the "Finance minister would in his medium-term budget policy statement" next October "outline how government would deal with this matter in an effective manner".

Ramaphosa announce the government, would use climate funding provided through the Just Energy Transition Partnership to invest in the grid and repurpose power stations that have reached the end of their lives.

Last year, the South African authorities raised the licensing threshold for new embedded generation projects from 1 MW to 100 MW.

The move "unlocked a pipeline of more than 80 confirmed private sector projects with a combined capacity of over 6,000 MW", Cyril Ramaphosa said. He added the government was "working together with industry to accelerate the most advanced projects, several of which are already entering construction".

Following the reform and citing "the enthusiasm shown by the private sector", the President said "the licensing threshold for embedded generation" will be "completely" removed.

Hoping private investmentin electricity generation would enable a "rise to higher levels".

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