Finance and Policy

ESI Africa is a provider of daily electricity news. Our coverage includes Africa investment news as well as energy regulation and energy funds.

Private sector in Ugandan power projects

[img:Jan%20Martin%20Witte.thumbnail.jpg|Dr Jan Martin Witte,
Senior Project Manager,
KfW Development Bank
]8 March 2013 - Dr Jan Martin Witte, senior project manager at KfW Development Bank in Germany says the new GET FiT renewable energy funding mechanism was designed to help finance ready-to-build small scale renewable energy projects in Uganda. It was also intended to deal with the financial challenges, particularly the comparatively low REFiT tariff schedule and the recent liquidity crisis at the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company which has undermined investor confidence.

Financing for Liberia power plant rehabilitation

[img:Worldm.thumbnail.jpg| ]7 March 2013 - The government of Liberia and the European Investment Bank (EIB) recently agreed to a US$65 million loan deal as part of a financing arrangement for the Mount Coffee hydroelectric power plant rehabilitation. The loan comes with a high concessional interest rate of 1.42%, amounting to US$8 million payable over 20 years with a four years grace period.

European governments can’t keep loading the costs of decarbonisation on consumers

[img:CO2_0.jpg| ]6 March 2013 - “Whisper it quietly,” says Jonathan Lane, GlobalData's head of consulting for power and utilities, “the US has a more progressive renewable support policy than Europe.” In the US, the major federal support scheme for renewables, the Production Tax Credit (PTC), provides a tax break for renewable generators of US$c2.2\kWh for 10 years. However, in many European countries, renewable subsidies are loaded onto customers’ electricity bills, usually through a tax or sometimes via an electricity retailer obligation.

Uganda seeks finance for power projects

[img:uganda_0.JPG| ]4 March 2013 - Uganda has approached international investors to participate in the country’s electricity sector, among these Indian and Chinese state banks according to the Observer of Uganda.

Eskom gets half of what it asked for

[img:Eskom_0.jpg| ]By Antonio Ruffini

1 March 2013 - The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) has awarded Eskom an average 8% annual tariff increase over the next five years. The utility had asked for 16% a year over the multi-year price determination (MYPD3) period between 2013 and 2018, commencing at the start of April 2013.

Eskom’s requested increase was widely criticised by both business and labour organisations. Numerous submissions at public hearings held across South Africa earlier in 2013 stressed that Eskom’s requested tariff increase level would be at the expensive of the country’s economy.

Taxes on EU coal generation

[img:Money.thumbnail.jpg| ]1 March 2013 - Taxes on power generation, if not widespread, are becoming increasingly popular in Europe, as governments target utilities making significant profits from burning cheap coal in a low carbon price environment, states a GlobalData energy consultant.

January 2013 saw the Netherlands introduce a €13.73 per tonne tax on coal in an aim to reduce coal consumption, raise revenue and target generators’ profits. The Spanish government has also proposed a 6% tax on all power generation to help pay for its “tariff deficit” – the subsidy that the government uses to keep regulated electricity prices below cost.

EU, USA on divergent electricity price paths

[img:Worldm.thumbnail.jpg| ]28 February 2013 - Europe and the US are headed in opposite directions in regards to electricity pricing, as renewable energy subsidies, fossil fuel prices and taxation impact upon residential power prices across the two regions, according to analysis released by research and consulting firm GlobalData. According to the firm, the difference between residential retail electricity prices across countries was dramatic, with German residential consumers paying more than 2.5 times their American counterparts in 2012.

Tarfaya 300 MW wind project in Morocco

[img:wind.thumbnail.JPG| ]28 February 2013 - French utility GDF Suez has announced the readiness for commencement of construction of the 300 MW Tarfaya wind farm in Morocco, which will be the largest wind project in Africa. The project is owned in partnership with Nareva Holding, a Moroccan energy company.

The Tarfaya plant has been contracted to supply electricity to the Moroccan state utility Office National de l’Electricité et de l’Eau Potable (ONE) under a 20 year power purchase agreement (PPA) on a build, own, operate and transfer (BOOT) basis. Full commissioning of the wind farm is anticipated at the end of 2014.

Zesa starts paying Zambia debt to facilitate Batoka power project

[img:Handsh3_0.jpg| ]26 February 2013 - Zimbabwe electricity supply authority (Zesa) says it has started paying a US$70 million debt to Zambia, payment of which will enable the two countries to embark on the joint 1,600 MW hydroelectric Batoka power project. Zambia and Zimbabwe have started preliminary work on the project, which will have an estimated cost of US$2.5 billion. The power plant is expected to be built and operated by a private company for a period of years before transferring ownership to the two states.

Kenya looking at large power tariff increases

[img:Money.thumbnail.jpg| ]25 February 2013 - Kenya Power, the country’s sole electricity distributor, has proposed to Kenya’s Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) that its electricity tariff be effectively tripled over the next three years for power supplied to the manufacturing sector, and increase by 150% for power supplied to residential sector customers, with the first increment to apply from March 2013. This proposal was made on the grounds that the existing tariffs are not sustainable in view of an ambitious capacity expansion and operating costs.

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