Overview
Objectives of INEP Policy Guidelines
Electricity Acts and Legislation
 
 
 
 
 

Background

Electrify the country, in particular low cost residential housing

In 1994 Parliament approved a plan to ensure equal access to basic services for all South Africans and the Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) strategy was born. Eskom and the municipalities electrified approximately 2, 5 million households during 1994 to 1998. The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) was tasked to develop and oversee the implementation of the Integrated National Electrification Programme (INEP) from 1999 to 2001. Eskom was tasked by the NERSA to undertake the implementation through use of contractors and service providers.

In the year 2001 the Government decided to transfer the responsibility and implementation oversight of the electrification programme to the DoE by then it was Department of Mineral and Energy. Over 7 million households has been connected to grid and over 143 432 connected by non-grid technology between 1994 and 31 March 2017.

Municipalities and Eskom are responsible for reticulation and distribution of electricity to households, in their licensed supply area and they are both funded by the DoE through the INEP programme. The DoE has a number of policies emanating from the White Paper of 1998. These policies are the ones that enable electrification to be focused and also to maximize on the expected outcomes of electrification. Currently at least 235 000 households are electrified, 15 000 to non-grid, medium voltage lines and new bulk substations per annum are constructed to extend the services to deep rural areas including the 27 Priority Districts.

The main funding of the national electrification programme is a conditional grant allocation through the National Budget (Fiscus). The DoE occasionally provides capacity building support to municipalities struggling to implement the electrification programme. However, the electrification programme experiences a number of challenges which include:

  • Implementation of grid connections in some municipalities starting late due to municipal financial year being July – June, whereas the department’s (National) financial year runs from April – March.
  • The lack of holistic infrastructure to ensure that the networks are extended in the most effective manner.
  • More households have to be electrified in deep rural areas where installation cost in much higher.
  • Lack of skills and resources in municipalities ‘technical departments to plan and manage these large electrification projects. Long procurement processes in both Eskom and municipalities delaying the start and completion of projects and the escalation of costs.
In addressing the above, the Department intends to review and monitor the Strategic Electrification Plan, ensure capacity building within the Department and in Municipalities looking at whether the current skills, knowledge, structure and personnel development are aligned to the needs of the department.

Electrification Statistics for March 2017 (DoE, 2017)

Province Projected Households (April to March 2017) Houses Without Electricity Houses Electrified Access Per Province
Eastern Cape 1 826 480 353 125 1 473 355 80.67%
Free State 891 184 110 352 780 832 87.62%
Gauteng 4 231 251 704 248 3 527 003 83.36%
Kwazulu Natal 2 748 760

501 262

2 247 498 81.76%
Mpumalanga 1 164 143 98 533 1 065 610 91.54%
Northern Cape 326 250 41 071 285 179 87.41%
Limpopo 1 534 999 50 689 1 484 310 96.70%
North West 1 149 559 152 075 997 484 86.77%
Western Cape 1 768 694 160 547 1 608 147 90.92%
Total 15 641 320 2 171 902 13 469 418 86.11%

  Electricity access to date is at 86.11 % with growth. The province with the highest access to electricity is Limpopo with 96.70 % and lowest is Eastern Cape with 80.67%. Although electrification programme is successful in the country, funding and capacity to implement are to be priorities.  

2017/18 INEP MTEF Allocations

Programme 2017/18   (R‘000’) 2018/19   (R‘000’) 2019/20   (R‘000’)
MUNIC Prog 2, 087, 048 2, 204, 477 3, 327, 929
ESKOM Prog 3, 846, 154 3, 962, 031 4, 182, 453
Non-Grid 189, 828 201, 649 212, 941
Baseline Allocation 6, 123, 030 6, 368, 157 7, 723, 323

2017/18 Allocations Per Province
 
Province Municipality Programme Allocations   (R’000) Eskom Programme Allocations   (R’0000)
Eastern Cape 472 , 000  895 , 587
Free State 101, 000 49, 059
Gauteng 150 , 000   67 , 324
Kwazulu Natal 540, 000 1, 095, 905
Limpopo 298, 000 800, 199
Mpumalanga 200, 000 400, 390
Northern Cape 124, 000 138, 497
North West 103, 000 304, 695
Western Cape 99, 048 94, 498
Total 2, 087, 048 3, 846, 154

National Development Plan (NDP)

According to the NDP Chapter 4 the Deparment of Energy says that between a fifth and a quarter of South Africans still have no access to the grid. The following interventions are proposed:

  • A thorough review of targets, planning, technology choices, funding and implementation.
  • Subject to costs, South Africa could for at least 90% grid connections by 2030, with alternative off-grid options offered to the remaining households for whom a connection is impracticable.

New Household Electrification Strategy

The Cabinet approved (26 June 2013) the implementing of the new Household Electrification Strategy based on the following focus areas:

  • The defining of universal access as 97% of households, as full electrification is unlikely to be possible due to growth and delays in the process of formalising informal settlements;
  • The electrification of about 90% of households through grid connection and the rest with high-quality non-grid solar home systems or other possible technologies based on cost effective options in order to address current and future backlogs;
  • The development of a master plan to increase efficiency in planning and the delivery process to ensure more connections.
Medium Term Strategic Framework

MTSF Targets 2014-2019 and Progress as at March 2017
 
Programme Targets Progress Percentage Diff
Grid 1 250 000 769 426 61.55% 480 574
Non-Grid 105 000 52 778 50.30% 52 222
Total 1 355 000 822 204 60.68% 532 796
 

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