South Africa’s government will allow private investors and companies to build their own power plants with up to 100 megawatts of generating capacity without a license, up from a previous limit of 1 megawatt.
The change will help address crippling energy shortages that are seen as the greatest impediment to efforts to revive an economy battered by the coronavirus, President Cyril Ramaphosa said in on online briefing on Thursday. Projects will still require the necessary permits, which will be much quicker to secure, he said.
Obtaining licenses to build power plants for self-generation has been slow and cumbersome and mining companies and other power-intensive industries have been lobbying for the cap to be raised. Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe has previously proposed that the limit be lifted to 10 megawatts.