The Deputy Energy Minister designate, Mohammed Amin Adam, recently announced the possible merger of PURC and Energy Commission. This merger is intended to avoid over-regulation of the energy sector and provide a one-stop shop for efficient regulation. The PURC and EC are the main regulatory agencies in the power sector, responsible for technical regulation such as licensing and setting of standards and rates.
The PURC was established under the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission Act, 1997 (Act 538) to regulate the provision of public utility services to consumers. The PURC provides guidelines for rates chargeable for the provision of utility services, promotes fair competition among public utilities, and conducts investigations into standards of quality of service given to consumers.
The Energy Commission, on the other hand, was established under the Energy Commission Act, 1997 (Act 541) to provide for the regulation, management, development and utilization of energy resources, the granting of licences for the transmission, wholesale supply, distribution and sale of electricity and natural gas, refining, storage, bulk distribution, marketing, and sale of petroleum products.
It is anticipated that a merger of the two regulators into one entity would optimize investor participation and align economic and technical regulation.
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