South Africa hopes to start up its biofuel industry

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Reuters reports that almost a decade after the policy to promote biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel was first approved, South Africa hopes to finish its biofuels regulatory frame work by March 2019.

South Africa, Africa’s most industrialised economy wants biofuels to initially meet two percent or 400 million litres of the country’s annual fuel consumption. This will reduce South Africa’s dependence on oil imports and improve the trade balance.

Since the approval of a national biofuels strategy in 2007, regulatory uncertainty centred on financial support incentives to manufacturers has choked investment. In a speech prepared for an energy conference in Cape Town, the Energy Minister, Jeff Radebe said “the department will be tabling this biofuel framework to cabinet for its consideration and approval before the end of March 2019”.

Radabe notes that the framework deals with the mandatory purchase of biofuels by licensed manufacturers and feedstock plans that do not compromise food security.

 

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