SA will receive an energy equipment pledge from the People’s Republic of China, fulfilled as a donation to counter the ongoing challenges of load shedding. According to IOL, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, Minister in the Presidency responsible for Electricity, is set to officially receive the first consignment of this energy equipment at a ceremony in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal.
The donation is particularly significant as South Africa grapples with severe electricity shortages, leading to prolonged blackouts and public discontent over load shedding implemented by national power utility Eskom. The donation, part of the Technical Assistance Programme initiated during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s State Visit in August 2023, consists of 450 gasoline generators. These generators will be distributed to public service facilities, such as clinics, schools, and courts, serving as backup during load shedding to ensure uninterrupted service delivery.
The handover will involve the inspection of the generators at Eskom Howick CNC stores in Merrivale, followed by the official program at Newton Pre-Vocational School in Pietermaritzburg. The donation, valued at R167 million in emergency power equipment and an additional R500 million grant for development assistance, reflects China’s commitment to supporting South Africa in addressing its current energy challenges.
The relationship between South Africa and China, spanning decades, has seen significant cooperation to alleviate the country’s energy crisis. The donated equipment, ranging from 6kW generators to 200kW diesel generators, power supply vehicles, and off-grid PV energy storage supply systems, aims to cushion essential public facilities from the impacts of load shedding.
Dr Ramokgopa emphasised that healthcare facilities in remote and rural areas will soon be immune to power cuts, even during Eskom’s load shedding, thanks to the Chinese donation. The handover is critical as Eskom implements load shedding due to insufficient generation capacity, highlighting the urgency of sustainable energy solutions.
Picture: X / Kgosientsho_R
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