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Mera to regulate mini power grids

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The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) has stressed the need to regulate the operation of mini power production so as to prevent accidents, among others.

Currently, there are several mini grids by private companies and individuals that are not connected to the national grid which are not properly regulated because there is no framework in place to guide the process.

According to Mera Chief Executive Officer, Collins Magalasi, as Malawi is striving to expand access to electricity, it is important that standards are regulated.

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“If you go to villages these days, you find people generating their own electricity away from the national grid. But this is a sector that cannot be left without any guidelines and as Mera we thought it is important to develop a regulatory framework,” Magalasi said.

He was speaking in Lilongwe on Wednesday during a consultative workshop on the new regulatory framework for electricity mini grids in Malawi.

Magalasi said the aim of the regulatory framework is to ensure communities benefit by having sustainable and safe electricity which does not damage their appliances, among others.

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Principal Energy Officer in the Ministry of Energy, Thokozani Malunga, said government is playing a facilitating role in the development of the regulatory framework.

On his part, Renewable Energy Industrial Association of Malawi Acting Executive Director, Ron Kabvina, said the association expects that the new regulations will not impinge on the production of electricity off the national grid.

“We also hope that Malawians will be given more space to produce electricity by, among other things, removing duty on materials imported from outside. Otherwise, we believe the regulations are necessary,” Kabvina said.

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