15 May 2008 – Regional energy ministers will revive the regional energy planning network alongside the recovery roadmap adopted a few weeks ago. The plan will prioritise programmes and activities and will be open to review every five years.

ElectricityIntegrating energy efficiency, regional transmission and power surplus capacity utilisation, the plan will seek to mitigate energy shortages in the region.

"The plan would contain prioritised programmes and activities covering the entire energy sector that includes conservation and increasing capacity and would be reviewed every five years," the minister’s said in a press statement.

A report on the state of surplus capacity in the region noted the following:

  • Available capacity in April 2008 was 47,067MW while available capacity of 43,518 in December 2007;
  • An improvement of 8 percent in available capacity between December 2007 and April 2008 has been achieved;
  • The difference between installed and available capacity is currently about 8,000 MW;
  • A total of about 1,700MW was commissioned in 2007 in Angola, South Africa and Swaziland against a target of 1,925MW;
  • In 2008, SAPP has planned to commission 1,757MW against a planned target of 2,014MW;
  • Long-term projects shall be implemented between 2008 and 2025 and shall provide additional power amounting to 44 000MW, at a cost of US$41.5 billion.

The ministers, who met in Kinshasa at the end of April, also agreed to revive the Energy Planning and Environmental Management Training Programme, which expired in February 2008. They also agreed to strengthen existing structures, such as the energy ministerial task force, SADC secretariat, SAPP and RERA.

They will meet again in South Africa in December.