SA ends red tape to deal with power blackouts

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South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa has responded to the rolling blackouts affecting the country with a major shake-up to the energy sector that will allow private power companies to generate more electricity without red tape.

The partial liberalisation introduces a new era for South Africa’s beleaguered energy sector, the president says.

For years the state-owned power utility, Eskom, has battled to meet the demand of one of Africa’s biggest economies.

“There is no economy that can grow substantially without energy security,” Mr Ramaphosa said.

The limit on the self-generation of electricity without a licence has been lifted from 1MW to 100MW.

The president’s briefing was live streamed:

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These changes will make it easier for independent power providers to generate electricity and sell it back to the grid.

Firms will still need to obtain some permits, like a grid connection permit.