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MBABANE – Biomass is imperative to Eswatini as the country is currently working on increasing local generation of electricity.

The supply of electricity would transpose beyond 2025 as Eswatini Electricity Company’s (EEC) contract with Eskom South Africa lapses. EEC currently imports about 70 per cent of its electricity from neighbouring countries, among which is South Africa, where electricity is generated by Eskom. The government of Eswatini and business community have urged investors to envisage possible outcomes of investing towards biomass for the purpose of generating electricity. They postulated biomass energy could be derived from wood and agricultural products, solid waste, landfill gas and alcohol fuels.


The above listed products are exorbitant in the sugar and textile industry, which, the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade, Manqoba Khumalo, attested to be key players in biomass energy production. In an interview with this publication, Khumalo said localising the generation of electricity is advantageous to the country. The minister said investors would yield tangible return as they would contribute to the local power grid, supplying both urban and rural areas. He said since the contract was expiring, local businesses capable of producing electricity should commence production. “Biomass production is currently imperative to the country as we are working on increasing local generation of electricity to limit imports,” he said.

The minister annexed to the paramount role investors play in the production. He said the augment of funds towards this project would assist subsides the demand of electricity locally.
EEC said their objective in the next five years was to increase local generation of electricity, and deliver affordable and reliable electricity while simultaneously ensuring long term financial stability of the company. They said they also aim to promote growth of local suppliers and value chains within the realms of affordability, and requisite quality standards; and have a culture of accountability, high performance, and good customer experience.


“The strategy requires that we critically exhibit the company values of service excellence, respect, social responsibility, honesty and integrity. We look to our stakeholders to hold us accountable and actively assist us to achieve the same,” EEC said. Business Eswatini (BE) and Eswatini Energy Regulatory Authority (ESERA) organised ‘Power-Talks’ which took place at the BE War Room. This was revealed by BE Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Nathi Dlamini in an interview. Dlamini said the event was well-attended by a variety of members of the business community spanning from plantations, millers, forestry, banking, other industries which have a keen interest in the energy space.


He said one of the major objectives of the Indaba was to discuss the issues around the availability and sustainability of energy supply in the country, especially post 2025. “As the country seeks alternative sources of energy, which the private sector has already begun doing, the gathering felt that we need to be mindful and sensitive to the price-points at which these alternatives will be offered,” he said. Dlamini added that another issue which the gathering felt strongly about was the need for BE to be to consider matters of climate change as said matters require urgent attention.

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