During the launch of the National Energy Policy at Bingu International Convention Centre in Lilongwe, the Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Bintony Kutsaira revealed that government is working to have up to 50% of the population connected to electricity by 2025.
According to the minister, the launch of the revised National Energy Policy would provide direction towards attainment of increased access to affordable, reliable, efficient, sustainable and modern energy for everyone in the country.
The Escom target, however, has been set amidst the complaint by the Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources, which called out Escom to revert to the ‘towards power all day everyday’ slogan, citing that the current slogan does not reflect the persisting power outages. During the launch, the minister acknowledged the challenges, stating that the country is facing many challenges in the power sector. “To deal with these challenges, we have to be dynamic in our policy. The old policy of 2003 was not addressing the challenges we are having now. We need reforms. For example, the unbundling of Escom into two companies, Egenco and Escom, was not reflected in the 2003 policy.” said Kutsaira.
On the other hand, World Bank energy specialist Paul Mukiibi said they are supporting Malawi in a number of projects aimed at improving power generation and access in the country. “We are doing both the on-grid and off-grid support. On the on-grid side, over the past five years, we are supporting Escom to connect as much as 280 000 new connections.” he confirmed.