Power developers deeply frustrated by SA’s regulatory obstacles

Engineering News 15 August 2012.

Regulatory uncertainties are continuing to hamper the development of much-needed private power capacity in South Africa, the head of the South African Independent Power Producers Association said on Tuesday.

In fact, MD Doug Kuni said the efforts currently being pursued to “keep the lights on”, which included power buy-backs from smelters and incentives for companies and individuals to reduce consumption, were creating the “illusion” that the power crisis was in hand.

He estimated that South Africa still had a 5 000 MW supply gap to close, over and above the projects being implemented by State utility Eskom. But the lack of urgency being shown in clearing the hurdles for independent power producers (IPPs) was undermining investment, which, in turn, was depressing the country’s growth and job creation outlook…