KenGen is set to sell electricity directly to Kenyans. Kenyans could soon be able to buy electricity directly from Kengen once the regulations are ready to be enforced in the new Energy Act.
The energy act that was signed by President Kenyatta in March of last year will pave way for companies to apply for retail license to distribute power to Kenyans. Currently only Kenya power has the monopoly to distribute power to Kenyans.
According to Managing Director Rebecca Miano, KenGen is already planning to sell power directly to large consumers.
This what she had to say, “The Energy Act 2019 has provision for us to sell power directly especially to large consumers. What is pending are the regulations of how that would be undertaken and how the infrastructure would be set up. We are certain that when the regulations are ready, that possibility will be there.”
Just recently, we saw Kenya power complain that it was losing customers who were now switching to solar power as a source of energy.
This latest move will be the last nail on the coffin of Kenya power who for years have enjoyed monopoly distributing power to consumers. Will more than half its sales going to large consumers, its fortunes will dwindle further.
However, according to the Energy Cabinet secretary, those seeking to be distributors will need their own infrastructure.
He noted that, “The electricity distribution market in Kenya is currently open to any player as long as they meet the licensing requirements as outlined by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) and are in line with the provisions of the Energy Act 2019. A new power distributor would require new assets and thus there may be expensive duplication of roles.”
According to the Energy Act, the distribution lines remain the property of Kenya power even after anyone pays for the fees to the utility firm to use the infrastructure.
Currently, regulations that would guide how much one would pay to use the Kenya Power distribution infrastructure are yet to be developed by the ministry.
This means that for KenGen to fully realize the plan they will need a distribution license and rely majorly on the network built by the KETRACO(Kenya Electricity Transmission Company).