Left Menu
Development News Edition

Botswana hikes power tariffs by 22% to help loss-making utility

Reuters | Gaborone | Updated: 25-03-2020 19:41 IST | Created: 25-03-2020 19:33 IST
Botswana hikes power tariffs by 22% to help loss-making utility
Representative image Image Credit: ANI

Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) will increase electricity tariffs by 22% from April 1, the regulator said on Wednesday, in a bid to boost revenues for the loss-making state utility. The Botswana Energy Regulatory Authority (BERA) said the price increases would apply to all categories of users.

"The increase is to ensure tariffs are cost-reflective, affordable and appropriately priced. The rate remains one of the lowest in the countries in the region without hydropower," it said. BPC has made operating losses for years due to high import costs, non-performing assets and operational inefficiencies, making it reliant on government subsidies to stay afloat.

But it has been slashing costs as part of a turnaround plan that has seen operational losses fall from 2 billion pula in 2015 ($168 million) to 72 million pula in 2019. Government subsidies have gradually reduced from a peak of 2.3 billion pula in 2015 to 800 million pula in 2019.

BERA said that, although increasing tariffs would put pressure on households and businesses already under strain from the coronavirus outbreak, the rise was necessary to enable BPC to cover its operational expenses. Botswana's electricity demand now stands at 600 megawatts (MW), mostly met by local coal-fired plants and imports from South Africa.

The diamond-producing nation is looking to diversify its supply by introducing solar power and electricity produced from Coal Bed Methane (CBM), a gas found in coal deposits. Two companies have been selected for a 100 MW CBM tender and are awaiting a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) offer from the government. BPC has issued tender for a 100 MW solar project.

"In the next two years the country will have at least 130 MW of renewable energy," BERA Chief Executive Rose Seretse said. ($1 = 11.9048 pulas)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Download The Devdiscourse News App for Latest News.



Education post-coronavirus: Schools to rush for more digitalization

Digital education would undoubtedly boom in the post-coronavirus world, supported by educational institutions that have discovered its efficiency during the crisis, but it is still not expected to outshine traditional classroom learning....

Public health care post-COVID 19 to go for revamping, not rebooting

Until now, the economies used to classify healthcare sector under social expenditure. However, the devastation caused by COVID 19 pandemic has upgraded public healthcare on topmost priority and core economic activity for controlling future ...

Coronavirus lockdowns to speed up long-pending revamping of supply chains

With millions of production lines impacted, business disruptions to some extent are unavoidable and the lessons learned from this turbulence will leave an everlasting impact on both global and local levels of supply chains....


Latest News

Trump says guidelines to slow coronavirus spread may get tougher

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday that he may toughen up current guidelines aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus, which has killed more than 2000 Americans.The guidelines will be very much as they are, maybe even toughene...

Trump says more than 1 million Americans have been tested for coronavirus

President Donald Trump said on Monday that more than 1 million Americans had been tested for coronavirus and urged people to continue to follow social distancing measures through April to prevent the virus from spreading. Every one of us ha...

Entertainment News Roundup: Polish composer Penderecki dies at 86; U.S. Supreme Court orders reconsideration of racial bias claim and more

Following is a summary of current entertainment news briefs.Polish composer Penderecki dies at 86 after long illnessPolands Krzysztof Penderecki, one of the worlds most celebrated composers, died on Sunday at the age of 86, his family said....

LendingClub cuts approval rates for high-risk borrowers as coronavirus spreads

LendingClub Corp on Monday cut loan approval rates for some high-risk borrowers and increased income and employment verification requirements, in a sign that alternative lenders could pull back from lending as the coronavirus crisis deepens...

Give Feedback