Policy, Institutional and Programme Readiness for Solar Energy Uptake in South Africa
South Africa has been facing challenges in terms of electricity supply. The increase in population and a growing economy have exacerbated electricity supply constraints. In response, policies and institutions have emerged to promote solar energy. This study investigates policy, institutional and programme readiness to embrace solar energy uptake in the country. The study reveals that South Africa has put in place numerous initiatives, like the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP), Solar Atlas, Solar Park, Solar Water Heating Programme (SWHP) and the solar energy technology roadmap. Furthermore, institutions have been established, including the South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI), Renewable Energy Centre of Research and Development (RECORD), South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA) and Southern Africa Solar Thermal and Electricity Association. Although significant progress has been made, South Africa still faces manufacturing, financing, capacity and competitiveness challenges that hinder the full exploitation of this energy sub-sector. The paper recommends the development of a marketing strategy to promote the use of solar-derived energy. There is a need to put more resources in supporting the South Africa government’s vision for promoting the local manufacturing of certain components that is being implemented by the Department of Trade and Industry (dti). This drive is being undertaken under the manufacturing competitiveness enhancement programme.