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Mantashe: Energy Dept is a regulator, not a lobby group

On Tuesday, the minister delivered the budget for mineral resources, which forms part of the reconfigured department which now includes energy.

FILE: Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe participating in the Sona debate on 25 June 2019. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe said his department would not act as a lobby group for any particular energy source and wanted a mixed energy supply.

Mantashe delivered his department’s budget vote in Parliament on Thursday.

On Tuesday, the minister delivered the budget for mineral resources, which forms part of the reconfigured department which now includes energy. His second budget vote focused entirely on energy.

Mantashe said South Africa could not afford to put all its efforts in one energy source, like nuclear or renewable energy. He said all sustainable energy sources should be prioritised as envisioned in the revised Integrated Resource Plan, which was still to be tabled in Parliament.

“The department is not a lobby group for any particular technology. It is a regulator [and] a department,” Mantashe said.

He added that not everything had been rosy in the energy sector which had been negatively affected by South Africa’s economy.

“The energy sector contributed negatively to the overall economic growth in the first quarter of 2019, the sector declined by 6.9%,” he said.

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)

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