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The CES is established to contribute to the training of the next generation of power sector personnel, regulators and policy makers.  It will also help develop strategies and competences for sustainable generation, transmission, storage, distribution and use of electricity in Namibia.  Focus areas will include customer relations and occupational safety, modern and intelligent grids and policy and regulatory development.

The electricity supply industry (ESI) generally encompasses the entire value chain from power generation to retailing and most importantly the policy and regulatory functions.  The present scenario in Namibia is such that the Electricity Control Board (ECB) is responsible for regulating the industry whilst NamPower, which is a state owned utility, is responsible for power generation, transmission, trading and partial distribution.  Space has been opened for IPP to participate in power generation while regional electricity distribution companies (REDs) have been established to purchase bulk power and manage its distribution to end-users.

2.1.1  Mandate

The Centre for Electricity Supply (CES) will provide technical support to the ESI to optimally provide consumers with adequate, safe and reliable electricity service.  This mandate will be fulfilled through:

  1. Research and development (R&D) in modern and future electricity networks, generation technologies and safety and service standards.
  2. Building relevant technical capacity to operate and manage modern and future power infrastructure.
  3. Train personnel through short courses and workshops in high voltage switching systems operations, fault analysis and protection, distribution automation, systems loss reduction, testing and maintenance, RE technologies, demand side management techniques, smart grids, deregulation and re-regulation, pricing, billing and accounting, procurement and contract negotiation, etc.
  4. Conduct market demand and supply surveys and techno-economic feasibility studies for the industry.
  5. Assist NSI in formulation of specifications and technical standards.
  6. Provide technical support and technological services to the industry and heavy consumers.
  7. Assist the industry in absorption, adoption and selection of technologies.
  8. Provide a key link between industry and government to promote awareness and understanding of the technologies and the service as well as encourage and influence supportive policies and programs.
  9. Promote industry regulation through development and promulgation of industry standards, codes of practice, training and accreditation programs, seminars and conferences.
  10. Inform society about policies and activities relating to the industry and its significance to the national economy.

2.1.2  Key Stakeholders

Strategic stakeholders in the electricity supply industry include;

  • MME,
  • Electricity Control Board,
  • NamPower,
  • REDs and local authorities,
  • Independent Power Producers, and
  • Large power users

2.1.3  Strategic Focus

Namibia’s electricity generation capacity and demand is very small compared to that of other countries in the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP).  The situation is expected to improve as a result of increased economic development.  The mining sector and other sectors such as raw materials processing are likely to spur electricity demand.  Rural electrification is also likely to bring economic development and increased demand for electricity in rural areas.  The cost of grid extension to rural areas is  uneconomic due to long distances involved, low population densities and, most importantly, low economic activities in the areas requiring electricity to support the cost of bringing the grid to those areas.  Innovative ways of bringing electricity to marginal areas are required.  Modernisation of the power infrastructure is key to an efficient and sustainable grid and the ESI in general.

Supportive policies and regulations appropriate to Namibian conditions need to be designed.  Technical Advisory Services and Training

CES will provide an important link between industry, policy and regulatory environment and consumers by providing the necessary but neutral and informed knowledge base.  CES will help develop and review relevant policies and regulations that will govern the industry.  It will also research and develop relevant technologies such as smart grids, distributed and micro-generation, safety equipment, etc.

Areas of training and capacity building will also include occupational safety, customer relations, quality management, regulations, standards and energy management.