Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi’s announcement that the independent power producer (IPP) power purchase agreements will be concluded by the end of October, will bring much-needed investment and will secure current jobs — and create new ones — in the sector. This is according to the South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (Sapvia). Following months of uncertainty over SA’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, Kubayi announced on Friday that Eskom would sign the agreements by end-October. However, the power utility has been given the green light to renegotiate the tariffs to not more than 77c per kilowatt hour (KWh). Kubayi said the current prices were unaffordable for Eskom. "By confirming dates for the financial close of the round 3.5 and round 4 projects, government is sending out a signal that indeed, as President [Jacob] Zuma stated last week, ‘SA is open for business’. The delays in the programme have endangered longterm investor confidence...

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