Price of electricity will not decrease unless Namibia finds a cheaper way to generate electricity: NamPower Managing Director

WINDHOEK: There is no way the price of electricity will decrease unless Namibia finds a cheaper way to generate electricity, NamPower Managing Director Paulinus Shilamba said yesterday.

He was speaking in the capital during the one-day Namibia Energy Policy Forum, which was aimed at discussing the country’s electricity supply and demand balance for the period 2015 to 2020, amongst other issues.

The foreseeable future does not appear to hold much relief for electricity users. This year, NamPower announced a minimum 15 per cent annual increase in costs for the next few years.

Shilamba explained that the cost of electricity will increase due to investments in new generation and transmission projects.

The price of electricity will also continue to increase due to the devaluation of the Namibian Dollar against the United States Dollar, and the interruptible electricity supply from South Africa’s Eskom.

Namibia imports more than 60 per cent of its electricity from Eskom.

Shilamba also attributed the increase in electricity prices to the high cost of importing electricity. Besides South Africa, Namibia also imports electricity from Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

He indicated that NamPower will spend N.dollars 2.4 billion on electricity imports in 2015 alone. This figure will go up to N.dollars 10 billion over the next four years.