SADC discusses power projects
Over 60 Delegates from neighboring countries gathered last week at the Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP) 41st executive committee meeting, discussing the status of generation and transmission projects and looming power challenges faced in the SADC region.
Delivering a keynote address at the meeting, the Minister of Mines and Energy Hon. Obeth Mbuipaha Kandjoze said that the Harambee Properity Plan (HPP) sets definite targets for the the period up to 2020. The plan gives specifics on additional generation projects and capacity load shedding, a review of the electricity market model, renewable energy priorities and electrification targets, the minster detailed.
Kandjoze elaborated that as a net importer of most forms of energy Namibia will need considerable local investments to reduce strategic risk. “It is therefore important that the to be developed National Energy Policy is sufficiently pragmatic and goal oriented to attract much needed investments I the sector, both from the private sector as well as government.” he advised
In addition the Minister of Mines and Energy said that the SADC ministers of energy continue to monitor the developments of new generation projects in the region with the current installed generation capacity amounting 58,000 MW. “The region still faces deficit with regard to electricity demand and the reserve required. The pace of commissioning new projects is still slow, but the electricity deficit will be overcome by 2021. We take cognizance of the various efforts being put in all SADC member states that will result in 35, 000 MW of new generation capacity being commissioned between 2016 and 2022.” Kandjoze detailed.
With regard to advancement of the project, Kandjoze shared that Namibia is working with Angola on the studies for the Angola – Namibia Inter connector Transmission Project as he explained that an inter-governmental Memorandum of Understanding is being formulated by the two governments before signature. Other Inter-governmental and inter-utility memorandums under review were mentioned to include Botswana – Namibia and Namibia -South Africa Interconnectors.
The managing director of NamPower – Mr Simson Haulofu also gave a few remarks at the meeting elaborating that since its inception, the SAPP has influenced the energy market in the SADC region and started competitive energy markets such as the Short Term Energy Market (STEM). He further shared that SAPP currently has 12 member states which included: Angola, Botwana, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Mozambique, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Haulofu explained that the SAPP is in the process of changing from operating in a cooperative pool to a competitive pool. “The SAPP Coordination Centre is busy advancing this cause, through the development of a competitive electricity market in the form of a Day-Ahead Market (DAM) and other products, which will enable the Pool to face new challenges head on.” he said. Nampowers managing director cautioned that the SAPP faces the challenge of promoting this vision and to manage the uncertainties that may be experienced during the transition period.