Energy regulator the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) says it has been alerted about concerns regarding the “imminent excessive increases” in gas prices that have been announced by one of its licensees and says that it did not approve such increases.
“In March 2021, the regulator approved the maximum gas prices for the licensee to charge and ensured that the margin was kept at a reasonable level.
“The maximum price envisaged by the Methodology to Approve Maximum Price of Gas in South Africa is well below R100/GJ, from which the licensee was expected to discount in line with objective differences stipulated in Section 22 of the Gas Act, 2001 (Act No. 48 of 2001),” Nersa outlines.
The entity notes that the recent unprecedented surge in international gas prices inadvertently affected South African gas prices.
In this regard, Nersa says it has embarked on a process of reviewing and refining the current methodology to protect the gas industry in South Africa and that a decision will be made in due course.
“Nersa does not expect licensees to exploit the current international gas price crisis to the detriment of consumers and the industry. Therefore, Nersa will investigate any possible unreasonable or excessive pricing cases and further collaborate with other administrative bodies that have concurrent jurisdiction on this matter.
“Nersa will also consider other avenues available to make sure that the previous energy regulator decision taken before the international energy crisis is not inimical to the South African consumers and the gas industry,” says Full-Time Regulator Member Responsible for Piped-Gas Regulation Nomfundo Maseti.