Gov Feeds

SPEECH BY THE HON. MINISTER FOR NATURAL RESOURCES AND ENERGY AT THE LAUNCH OF THE NATIONAL WATER POLICY. 

VENUE:

 HAPPY VALLEY HOTEL

DATE:

6TH NOVEMBER 2019.

 

The Programme Director;

Honourable Portfolio Committee Members from Both Houses of Parliament;

UNDP Country Representative;

The Regional Administrator - Hhohho Region;

Principal Secretaries here present;

Captains of Industry;

Representatives from Academic Institutions;

Members of the National Water Authority;

Members of the River Basin Authorities;

WASH stakeholders;

Government Officials;

Distinguished Guests;

Ladies and Gentlemen;

 

Good morning to you all.

It gives me great pleasure to stand before you today to officiate in this important function for the launch of our National Water Policy. This is a historic event as the country is for the first time having a policy in the water sector. It has been observed that since the times of the old Water Act of 1967 the country has always had an Act without the supporting policy document.  This also holds true for Water Act of 2003 which was operating without a policy to provide statement on good practice in the development and management of our water resources.

The Ministry greatly appreciates the efforts of the National Water Authority for spearheading the process of developing the Water Policy which provides the much needed guidance in the management and development of the country’s water resources. I have been advised that the process for the development of this document started some years back in as early as the year 2000. During this period water stakeholders and government officials were taken through a training process on how to develop a water policy. This process was facilitated by an external expert who capacitated the local team to undertake this process.

After inception the Policy development process had to be suspended as the SADC Region had to develop the Regional Water Policy to provide guidance on how Member States were to develop their respective Water Policies. The local policy development process was then resuscitated in 2006 after the passing of the Regional Water Policy and Strategy on which Members States now align their Policies and Strategies.

I take this opportunity to thank the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for providing the financial support to the tune of US$45,000 to support the policy development initiative. Through this support we were able to engage a professional team to finalize the development of the Policy document and also conducted national consultations to get inputs from the different stakeholders. This support is great appreciated and the Ministry remains grateful for your assistance.

The development of this document entailed the consultation of a wide spectrum of stakeholders which included amongst others Chiefs from all the four Regions of the Country, Parliament, Industry, Water Users and different other Ministries to ensure that the document does not conflict with other existing policies. The Policy received Cabinet approval in August 2018 and is being launched today to alert the nation of its existence and to initiate follow-up processes for its implementation.

It is worth noting that the Policy is coming up with new approaches in the development and management of our water resources. For an example, under Section 4.6.1 the Policy indicates that there shall be a liberation of service providers for potable water supply and sanitation services. It indicates that this will be regulated by the National Water Authority and will allow the private sector to be an active player in the provision of these services and this will improve the level of potable water supply service to our rural areas.  

Another new development brought about by this document is a water use charging mechanism. Under Section 4.7 the Policy provides for water pricing structures for various uses and levels, including issues of cross-subsidization in various forms to ensure sustainability of water assurance and supply services.

May I take this opportunity to urge you all to familiarize yourselves with this document as it has very innovative strategies on how the different policy pronouncements will be implemented and it also assigns roles to different entities. This document has been uploaded on the government website for easy access and is also available at the offices of the Department of Water Affairs.

From now on the Ministry will initiate processes for the review of the prevailing water legislation to incorporate the new principles and strategies coming with the Policy. This process is planned to commerce in the new year and will see the Ministry reviewing the Water Act of 2003 with other prevailing water legislation to be in sync with the new policy. Areas of special attention will be on issues surrounding the provision of potable water to our rural areas to ensure that the country’s vision of attaining 100% access to potable water supply is achieved by 2022. This is also in line with meeting the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 6) by the year, 2030.  Another area of special attention will be on the establishment of Basin Institutions for the management of our national water resources.

The Ministry looks forward to the active role of the National Water Authority to drive the process through.

Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, in conclusion may I take this opportunity to thank you all for having devoted your precious time to be part of this important event.

With these few remarks, it is now my pleasure to declare the National Water Policy officially launched.

 

I THANK YOU AND MAY GOD BLESS US ALL.

TALKING POINTS FOR THE LAUNCH OF THE CENTRE FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY RESEARCH AND HAND OVER OF SOLAR PV SYSTEM

 

17TH OCTOBER 2019

LIGCABHO LEMASWATI SPORTS EMPORIUM – UNESWA KWALUSENI CAMPUS

__________________________________________________________________________________

PROTOCOL

  • PROGRAMME DIRECTOR,
  • HONOURABLE MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT,
  • HIS EXCELLENCY, THE AMBASSADOR OF THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA (TAIWAN),
  • THE UNESWA VICE CHANCELLOR.
  • REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR,
  • PRINCIPAL SECRETARIES,
  • CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER’S FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR,
  • UNESWA LECTURERS AND STAFF,
  • GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS,
  • DISTINGUISHED GUESTS,
  • LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.

 

  • It is my honour to be invited to be part of this very important occasion to officially launch the Centre for Sustainable Energy Research and also to witness the handover of the solar PV system that was donated by the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to the University of Eswatini.
  • Government through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy partnered with the University of Eswatini in the establishment of the Research Centre.
  • This is in response to the recognition of the National Development Strategy - Vision 2022 that energy is absolutely necessary to achieve the socio-economic development, and identifies energy research as one of its strategic objectives.
  • The implementation strategy of the updated National Energy Policy of 2018 recognises the pivotal role of research and development in advancing a sustainable energy industry in Eswatini. It further outlines research strategies which should be taken and led by UNESWA.
  • The Centre is therefore well placed to run with this research & development initiative. It is therefore encouraging to learn that the Centre will, amongst other objectives:-
  • Assist to increase the implementation of energy efficiency and conservation measures in the country,
  • Help address the slow adoption of renewable energy technologies such as solar PV, biogas, wind power and other bio-energy resources,
  • Prepare the country for future energy systems such as fuel cells,
  • Address issues of sustainable energy access for all.
  • The establishment of the Centre is therefore a game changer on energy matters in the country.
  • Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, I wish to hereby take this opportunity to appeal for the support of this Centre through engagement or hiring of its expertise in energy related matters as well as through providing financial support where required in order to enable the Centre to grow in leaps and bounds.
  • The establishment of the Centre would not have come at a better time especially now with the advent of climate change, energy insecurity, rising energy costs coupled with increased interest and opportunities of tapping into the sustainable energy sector.
  • I urge the Centre to develop formal links with local, regional and international institutions of similar interests for benchmarking and experience sharing and also to provide a forum for discussion of energy, climate change and sustainable development issues which affect the country.
  • I am happy to report that in a bid to strengthen capacity of the Centre, the Ministry has considered linking it with the SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (SACREEE) on matters of developing the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in the country.
  • Further, the Ministry has solicited assistance from the International Atomic Energy Agency which has agreed to assist the Centre on matters of developing a curriculum which will be used by the Centre in developing skills on matters of energy research and planning. I am reliably told that before the end of this month experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency will be visiting the Centre for initial discussions on the curriculum development.
  • The Ministry’s aspirations is for the Centre to provide support services to the energy industry, including premium testing facilities for energy technologies, energy resources data consolidation and analysis in order to assist government to adequately plan for the energy sector.
  • Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, I also wish to take this opportunity to appreciate the continued support and cooperation that is consistently provided by the Republic of China (Taiwan) to the Kingdom of Eswatini.
  • To this end today, we have witnessed the Republic of China (Taiwan) officially handing over an 82.56 KW solar PV system that it donated to UNESWA.
  • Apart from assisting the University to reduce its electricity expenditure and also have some backup power during electricity outages, the system will further assist UNESWA and the Centre to carryout research on solar PV system technologies as well as provide the opportunity for students to benefit from practical hands on training on solar PV technologies through the use of the system.
  • Your Excellency, on behalf of the Government of the Kingdom of Eswatini, I hereby thank the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) for making this possible.
  • We are forever grateful for your government’s continued support and assistance as Eswatini moves towards attaining a first world status by 2022.
  • Ladies and Gentlemen, with those brief remarks, it is my singular honour to declare the Centre for Sustainable Energy Research officially launched.

I thank you.                                                              

ESWATINI RANKED FIFTH ON WORLD ENERGY INDEX

 minister with Dr Elham Ibrahim africa vice chair of WEC Minister with Dr Elham Ibrahim africa vice chair of WEC

The Honourable Minister of Natural Resources and Energy Senator Peter Bhembe is attending the 24th World Energy Congress hosted by the Abu Dhabi Department of Energy (DoE). The Energy Congress started on 9th – 12th September, 2019 in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, under the theme ‘Energy for Prosperity’.

The World Energy Congress is the World Energy Council’s global flagship event offering a unique platform for global energy leaders to explore new energy futures, critical innovation areas, and new strategies.

The Congress brings together prominent leaders from the energy sector around the world to explore the prospects of international partnerships and joint ventures to drive the sector’s transition. Ministers responsible for Energy and exhibitors are part of the Congress which presents a unique platform for exploring the state of the energy sector in Abu Dhabi, and showcasing the investment opportunities it presents. Over a 100 exhibitors are showcasing latest energy technologies and solutions being deployed around the world.

The meeting’s highlights from day 1 were the importance of diversifying the energy mix with renewable energy and the need to take a fresh look at innovation to deliver a successful energy transition. Minister Bhembe was also part of the launch of the updated World Energy Scenarios report by the World Energy Council. Among the key findings, were that energy demand per capita is projected to peak before the year 2030.

The Honourable Minister will also participate in the World Energy Congress, Trilemma Ministerial Roundtable. This year’s discussions will focus around the Energy Trilemma and the policy challenges it entails. The World Energy Council’s Energy Trilemma Index ranks countries’ energy performance on three dimensions, Energy Security, Energy Equity, and Environmental Sustainability, based on global and national data.

Worth noting is that Eswatini’s efforts have been recognized on the energy sector as it was ranked number 5 on the top 10 of the 2019 Trilemma Index. The top 10 comprises countries that have done remarkably well on the equity front improving access. Eswatini’s index reflects a 25% improvement, this is a result of the new policies in place the country has and increased energy access.

 

The Minister was accompanied by Lindiwe Dlamini who is the Chief Energy Officer in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy and Vusi Mkhumane, the Chief Executive Officer of Eswatini Energy Regulatory Authority.

 

Ministry partners with the University of Eswatini in the establishment of a Research Centre.
The Government through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy has partnered with the University of Eswatini in the establishment of the Centre for Sustainable Research. Minister for Natural Resources and Energy Peter Bhembe when launching the Centre said issues of sustainable energy access for all and slow adoption of renewable energy technologies will be addressed in country among other issues. “I urge the Centre to develop formal links with local, regional and international institutions of similar interests for benchmarking and experience sharing and also to provide a forum for discussion of energy, climate change and sustainable development issues which affect the country”, said the Minister. Download Minister’s speech.

IMG 7640

 

University of Eswatini (UNESWA) to reduce its electricity expenditure
University of Eswatini (UNESWA) to reduce its electricity expenditure and students to carryout research on solar PV systems as the Republic of China (Taiwan) donates an 82.56 KW solar PV system. Speaking on behalf of the Ambassador Jeremy Liang was Minister Oliver Ham who said the roof-top, off-grid solar PV system installed at the UNESWA is one of three PV systems donated by the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) The other two ground-type, off-grid systems are commissioned at Central Medical Stores (CMS) and Bhalekane Correctional Farm respectively. “The government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) has committed financial and technical assistances to the Kingdom of Eswatini over the past 51 years to develop in the areas of rural electrification, health care, agriculture, ICT, and education, etc. The donation of these solar PV systems, again, is a token of our bilateral long-term friendly and cooperative relationship”, he said. Download Minister Ham’s speech.

 

 

Minister Attends Ninth Session of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in Abu Dhabi

 

IMG 20190111 WA00211

Hon. Minister flanked by EEC Managing Director and  Snr Energy Officer Mzwandile Thwala.

The Honourable Minister of Natural Resources and Energy Senator Peter Bhembe is attending the Ninth Session of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) which started on 10th – 13th January, 2019 taking place in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. The Kingdom of Eswatini has been designated the position of Vice President of the 9th Session of the Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency.

 

Recognising the continued growth in energy transformation, renewable energy is increasingly becoming the most competitive and reliable source of energy in many parts of the world for countries, regions, cities, businesses and individuals. The ongoing 9th session of the IRENA Assembly serves as a strategic global platform to discuss ways to accelerate renewable energy deployment at the national, regional and international levels. The assembly also presents an opportunity to take stock of progress made during the year of the IRENA work programme 2018-2019, and further provide guidance on how the IRENA can best support its Members in the context of the ongoing energy transformation.

During the 9th Assembly, the Honourable Minister will also participate in Ministerial Round tables focusing on “Scale-up Deployment of Renewable Energy in Africa, Catalysing Off-Grid Renewables Deployment towards Universal Access, and Solar Opportunities Developing Cities”.

IRENA has greatly assisted the Kingdom of Eswatini to develop enabling policies to support the development of the renewable energy sector. In 2014 IRENA supported the country in developing the Renewable Readiness Assessment (RRA) report and in 2017 Eswatini collaborated with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in the Long-term Energy Planning capacity building programme and the development of Eswatini’s Energy Masterplan programme. The country has now produced an Energy Masterplan document which is a long term national energy planning document. This initiative has benefitted the country by building expertise on long-term energy planning, key energy statistics and energy planning tools.

The Energy Masterplan will guide Eswatini’s a transition to a sustainable energy future, and serves as a quantitative base for planning the future energy sector development. It asses the future energy demand up to 2034. It promotes the widespread adoption and sustainable use of all forms of energy in particular renewable energy, including bio-energy, hydropower, solar and wind energy, in the pursuit of sustainable development, energy access, energy security and low-carbon economic growth and prosperity. All these goals are in-line with the country’s recently revised National Energy Policy, National Climate Change Policy, the National Development Plan as well as the Poverty Reduction Strategy and Action Plan

 

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