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Investors show huge interest in SA’s wind and solar programme

Author: Carol Paton

PRIVATE sector investment in renewable energy generation will reach R193bn following the announcement on Sunday of another 13 preferred bidders for wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) projects by Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson. 

Renewable energy is regarded as the quickest way to add capacity to the grid, but, as it is weather-dependent, it cannot provide base-load capacity. SA’s renewable energy programme is the fastest growing in the world and has seen large investment flow into the country, while prices of energy production have fallen. 

In order to accelerate the programme, Ms Joemat-Pettersson said in April that in addition to the 13 bids she selected in the fourth window, a further 13 projects that were good to go would be added at a later date. The addition means SA has commissioned 92 renewable projects with the potential to add 6,327MW of capacity to the grid. 

As part of their bids, independent power producers are obliged to contribute to socioeconomic development in the relevant area, with R19.1bn committed in projects in the next 20 years. 

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