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The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) has published the draft block exemption regulations for Energy Suppliers 2023 and similar exemptions for Energy Users under the Competition Act.
- Minister of the DTIC, Ebrahim Patel, said that the new regulations would exempt certain agreements or practices by energy suppliers and users in South Africa in a bid to boost the uptake of new energy generation.
- This is in direct response to the electricity supply crisis, with the changes coming under the new freedoms allowed by the declared national state of disaster.
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The exemptions include agreements relating to:
- Joint procurement of backup or alternate energy supply for purposes of supply to the national grid – including power purchase agreements;
- Sharing of backup or energy generation capacity, including energy generation equipment;Joint negotiation and purchase of energy related to product and service supply;
- Joint financing of backup and alternative energy supply to the national grid;
Joint purchasing of shared backup and alternative energy generation capacity;
- Energy use, saving and optimisation initiatives to limit operational downtime and reduce energy demand;
- Joint procurement and the sharing of security services for purposes of securing shared sites.
However, despite these exemptions encouraging businesses to work together on energy solutions, the department doesn’t want businesses to get too close.