KenGen to Sell Electricity Directly to Consumers

  • Kenya Power workers repair a transformer on the Meru-Makutano road on March 28, 2016.
    Kenya Power workers repair a transformer on the Meru-Makutano road on March 28, 2016.
    Daily Nation
  • Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) is set to begin selling power directly to consumers once the regulations are ready to be enforced in the Energy Act.

    The Act was signed by President Uhuru Kenyatta in March 2019 paving the way for companies to apply for a retail license to distribute electricity.

    KenGen Managing Director Rebecca Miano revealed that the company is planning to sell power to large consumers.

    Kengen CEO Rebecca Miano
    Kengen CEO Rebecca Miano

    "The Energy Act 2019 has a 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," she noted.

    The move will be a setback for Kenya Power, which has had a 98-year monopoly, considering large scale consumers account for over half of its electricity sale revenues.

    The Energy Act states that the distribution lines will remain the property of Kenya Power even after a licensee pays fees to the utility firm to use the infrastructure.

    Regulations that would guide how much one would pay to use the Kenya Power distribution infrastructure are yet to be developed.

    The Ministry of Energy, however, insists that new power distributors would require to purchase infrastructure that may be unfavourable in areas already being supplied.

    For KenGen to fully realize the plan they will need a distribution license and rely majorly on the network built by the Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (KETRACO).

    Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter noted that power distributors will need new infrastructure which may pose a challenge.

    "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," he stated.

    A transmission power line
    A transmission power line