Premier’s 11th Energy Digicon focuses on Growth For Jobs plan | Western Cape Government



Premier’s 11th Energy Digicon focuses on Growth For Jobs plan

18 May 2023

Media release: Energising job creation and growth – Premier’s 11th Energy Digicon focuses on energy resilience as part of Western Cape Government’s bold Growth For Jobs plan

Western Cape Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities Mireille Wenger was Premier Alan Winde’s special guest at his latest Energy Digicon. The Minister outlined the Western Cape’s Growth for Jobs (G4J) strategy, “Overall, our vision, as set out in our strategy, is a provincial economy that achieves break-out economic growth so we can enable jobs and opportunity. Such an economy will be sustainable, resilient, and diverse,” said the Minister.

The main thrust of G4J is:

  • Achieving significant and transformative economic growth;
  • Reaching R1 trillion with economic growth of between 4% and 6% by 2035;
  • Driving investment;
  • Stimulating markets;
  • Energy resilience and transition to net carbon zero;
  • Water security;
  • Technology and innovation; and
  • Infrastructure development and improved access to economic opportunities.

The strategy recognises that electricity is the number one binding constraint to economic growth and job creation. Minister Wenger added, “G4J aims to reduce reliance on Eskom of between 1 800 and 5 700 MW by 2035 and aims to attract between R21.6-billion and R68.4-billion in related investment.

We are working to create a predictable policy environment in our province, and we are helping municipalities to do research to understand and quantify their power needs now and into the future. We are doing our homework to plan for new sources of energy.”

The Western Cape Government (WCG) has committed R1.1 billion towards energy security over the next 3 years. The Premier explained, “Apart from this, investments of over R6 billion by municipalities in the province means we will be spending at least R7 billion over the next few years to make us energy resilient.”

In his weekly update on the state of the national power grid, Special Advisor on Energy to the Premier, Alwie Lester, pointed out blackouts will worsen as winter progresses. At a Cabinet Bosberaad held near George this week, the Cabinet received an update on the implementation of the WCG’s Energy Resilience programme.

The Premier said the emergency loadshedding packs component of the plan is progressing well. The packs are likely to include lighting, charging mechanisms, and food-warming bags. The selection criteria have now been finalised. This will see four categories of vulnerable people receiving these packs:

  • Learners in quintile 1,2,3 schools;
  • Elderly residents in frail care or assisted living facilities;
  • Vulnerable residents in municipalities; and
  • Agricultural workers.

“We hope to implement this aspect of the programme within a few weeks. We must find ways to help the most vulnerable in our province navigate the hardships that rolling blackouts are creating and exacerbating,” said Premier Winde.

To watch a recording of this week’s digicon please visit: