Mmamoloko Kubayi. Image credit: iKNOW Politics
South Africa’s energy minister, Mmamoloko Kubayi, tabled the 2017/18 Energy Budget Vote in Parliament on Friday.

Noting that the budget is being tabled during energy month – under the theme: Promoting Affordable and Sustainable Energy Mix in support of radical socio-economic transformation – Kubayi said this creates an opportunity to look at how best the department can deliver upon its mandate.

The Department of Energy has a critical role to play in ensuring that we secure the supply of energy and petroleum in the country.

The sector currently contributes R300 billion ($22.6 billion) towards the GDP of the country and accounts for 90,000 jobs.

Therefore, Kubayi noted that the budget allocation as department for this financial year is R8.1 billion ($603.9 million), of which R7.5 billion ($603.9 million) is for transfers to our entities and R244 million ($18 million) is for the department to embark on its operations and its projects. In breaking down the transfers;

  • INEP Implementation by Eskom is allocated R3.8 billion
  • Transfers to municipalities for INEP programmes R2 billion
  • INEP non-grid is allocated R189 million
  • National Solar Water Heater Programme has been allocated R411 million
  • EEDSM Municipalities is allocated R203.2 million
  • National Radioactive Waste Disposal Institute is allocated R30 million
  • SANEDI has been allocated R59.8 million
  • NECSA has been allocated R664.2 million
  • NNR has been allocated R38.6 million

Kubayi acknowledges IPP programme

Highlighting the significant importance and acknowledging the uncertainty around the Independent Power Producer (IPP) programme, Kubayi said the department will evaluate whether or not the programme is assisting them to achieve its objective as initially outlined. Read more…

“We need to reflect what are the lessons learned so far and what needs to be improved. We will look at the final report from the two teams of DPE and DOE and will therefore act accordingly,” she noted.

Kubayi added: “We need to look at how best to assist SMMEs who are interested in participating in this program. We will need to ensure that conducive conditions are created to see them grow and not condemned them to debt. We will engage NT to ensure that the guarantee we sign are for securing and supporting participation of SMMEs.

“It is against this vision Hon members that we see the IPP program’s future being critical to our developmental goals and that we will move this office to operate under the CEF group as part of the restructuring process announced earlier.”

According to the Minister, the department will be concluding work within this financial year on IEP and IRP to ensure that there is policy certainty.

Solar water heaters

Addressing the solar water heater programme, Kubayi said this initiative is possible through the “collaborative spirit of intergovernmental cooperation, with various stakeholders from the 3 spheres of government working together.”

“National departments responsible for human settlement, small business, training, industrial development, local government work closely with respective municipalities and provincial authorities to make the programme a success. We are alive to concerns from communities about the challenges related to the previous implementation model, and we are very careful not to repeat those mistakes.” Read more…

Kubayi highlighted: “It is our intention to continue with the solar water heater rollout programme in various municipalities as we strive to find an environmentally benign thermal solution for households.

“To date we have procured about 60,000 baseline systems from manufacturers who have complied with the 70% local content requirement we have imposed. This bodes well for the creation of a local industrial base and jobs in the manufacturing sector.”

Kubayi concluded: “Hon members I hereby table budget vote number 26 to the house for your consideration.”

Read the full Energy Budget Vote 2017/18 here.

 

Featured image:  iKNOW Politics