LAST year, Namibia imported 73% of its annual electricity requirements – the highest import figure recorded since independence.
This was revealed by Kornelia Shilunga, Deputy Minister of Mines and Energy, who remarked that Namibia is more and more relying on the availability and reliability of foreign generators, including those in neighbouring countries.
Between 1990 and 2009, average annual imports were at 48% and between 2010 and 2017, at 38%.
In response to the dependency on imports, the Ministry of Mines and Energy developed the National Integrated Resource Plan (NIRP).
“This is a 20-year developmental plan for Namibia’s Electricity Supply Industry spanning the period 2016 to 2035. It provides projections of the future electricity demand and identifies an economical feasible electricity generation option to meet the country’s electricity needs in a reliable and efficient manner,” Shilunga noted.
She added that the recently approved Modified Singler Buyer model (MSB) and the Independent Power Producer (IPP) policy, will increase Namibia’s domestic supply and thus reduce our import dependency.
Shilunga stated that N$81.2 is allocated to improve energy supply in the country, access to modern energy services and conservation.
“The rural electrification programme shall continue to be a priority for the ministry in providing access and usage of modern energy services. To this effect, a budget of N$54 million is allocated mainly to electrify schools and other government institutions,” Shilunga stated.
She added that the Renewable Energy Feed-in Tariff (REFIT) interim programme has added a total 10MW solar PV (one 5MW at Outapi and one 5MW at Trekkopje) to the national grid during the 2018/2019 Financial Year, bringing it to a total of 55MW out of 70MW.
PICTURE FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY. Photo: Contributed