Energy Regulation Board
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A proactive, firm and fair energy regulator

The role of the Energy Regulation Board is to ensure consumers receive a quality service at an affordable price while balancing a reasonable rate of return to energy utilities. In order to carry this out, the ERB ensures that all energy utilities in the sector are licensed, monitors levels and structures of competition, investigates and remedies consumer complaints.

Lady wishing to make a complaint

Consumer Complaints

Any person or consumer may seek the ERB’s intervention if they are dissatisfied with the handling of their complaint by an energy utility or they consider the outcome inconclusive.​

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Licence Applications

The criterion for awarding licenses is based on the premise that the Energy Regulation Board must license all enterprises conducting business in the energy sector.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) is a statutory body charged with the responsibility of regulating the energy sector in Zambia.

The ERB is generally responsible for ensuring that energy enterprises earn a reasonable rate of return on their investments and consumers are given quality products and service.

Key functions of ERB include issuance of licenses, monitoring the efficiency and performance of energy companies and ensuring they comply with relevant standards and license conditions. The regulator also receives, investigates and resolves complaints from consumers and energy enterprises regarding price adjustments, quality of energy products and services including the location of energy facilities.
Other activities include the design of standards with regards to the quality, safety and reliability of supply of energy and fuels; formulation of measures to minimize the environmental impact of energy; and recommendation of measures to be taken through regulations to the Minister.

• Electricity
• Fossil Fuels
• Renewable energy

The ERB is funded through grants from Government; and donations from cooperating partners.

ERB have four offices located in:

  • Chinsali
  • Kitwe
  • Livingstone
  • Lusaka (Head Office)

137 as at 15 December 2020.

The number is dynamic because new applications are continually processed, while some old licence expire.

354 as at 15 December 2020.

The number is dynamic because new retail sites are continually licensed as they are built, while old ones are decommissioned.

No. The Ministry of Energy is responsible for the procurement of petroleum feedstock and finished petroleum products.

The petroleum supply chain basically comprises the following:

Upstream: refers to the point of purchase of the commingled petroleum feedstock in the Middle East to the Indeni Refinery in Ndola

Downstream: refers to all industries that start from the refinery up to the delivery of petroleum products to commercial customers and services stations.

  • Setting wholesale petroleum products prices;
  • Setting refinery, pumping and through put fees for upstream players;
  • Determination of downstream margins for Oil Marketing Companies transporters and retail filling station dealers; and
  • Providing price support for imported finished products which are landed at prices higher that the local prices, especially during periods of the oil refinery shutdowns.

Not at all! Each member of staff buys fuel from a filling station of choice.

32 as at 15 Dec 2020 for various electricity licences including; generation, transmission, distribution, supply or trading, and system operator licences.

Electricity Entities include:
ZESCO Limited, a state Owned Power Utility Copperbelt Energy Corporation, an Independent Power Producer and Transmission Company; Lunsemfwa Hydro Power Company; North-Western Energy Company, a private Power Distribution Utility; Zengamina Power Company Limited Independent Power Producers; Maamba Collieries Limited; Kariba North Bank Extension Power Corporation; – Bangweulu Power Company Limited; Dangote Industries Zambia Limited and Ngonye Power PV

A standard connection is one where all relevant infrastructure such as lines and poles are available in the area where a customer seeks connection. Therefore, all that is needed is just a service cable (drop line) from the power lines into a customer’s house.

On the other hand, non-standard connections are those where there is need to put up infrastructure such as lines and poles to connect new customers to power.

Extra works and materials such as wires and cables and sometimes transformers are required to be installed to reach a customer’s premises. Naturally, there is more work and time required for non-standard connections.

Not at all! Each member of staff has an obligation to pay for the electricity they consume.

No. However, a one-off licence waiver is required, which is a regulatory consent granted by the ERB to anyone importing solar energy products for own use. In this context, own use means the product can only be used by those who bought it and is not transferable commercially or used for any kind of entrepreneurial purposes.

 

The Energy Regulation Board does not charge a fee for this service. Just submit a formal written application requesting for a one-off licence waiver. The application should be accompanied by information such as, but not limited to, consignment notices, a clear description of the intended use of the products and location where they will be used or installed.

Anyone is it at liberty to engage in the aforementioned business activities. However, one needs to be aware that these are regulated activities. Therefore, one must obtain the necessary legal rights to engage in one or more of them. This requirement extends to both individual people and incorporated bodies.

It is necessary to obtain a licence prior to commencing operations.

In October 2018 the Energy Regulation Board approved a regulatory framework for mini-grids in Zambia.

This framework is being road tested, and may be adjusted in line with learnings from, amongst others, mini-grid projects implemented by the Rural Electrification Authority, before regulations are gazetted.

The regulatory framework was developed in consultation with key stakeholders, including government, private sector, civil society and development partners.

The mini-grid regulatory framework comprises the following documents:
1. Executive Summary of the Licensing and Regulatory Framework;
2. Standard Licence to Generate, Distribute and Supply Electricity for a Mini-Grid Electricity System;
3. Rule on Tariffs Applicable to Mini-Grids in Zambia; and
4. Technical Requirements for Mini-Grid in Zambia.

If the capacity of the generation unit is up to 100kW, an exemption for a licence may be granted by ERB. In this context, own use means that electricity can only be used by those who produce it and is not transferable either commercially or for in-kind consideration.

If the capacity of the generation unit is 100kW or higher, a “generation for own use” licence must be obtained from the Energy Regulation Board (ERB), before commissioning and starting to generate electricity, not after completing the system.

Developers considering an investment in off-grid systems in Zambia can contact the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) who can support developers in liaising with the Energy Regulatory Board, Office for Promoting Private Power Investment, Zambia Revenue Authority, Zambia Environmental Management Agency, and Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, amongst others, with regards to the required approvals and licences for off-grid systems. ZDA has a One-Stop-Stop at http://www.zda.org.zm/ providing both local and foreign investors with business-friendly registration services with the aim of reducing the cost of doing business.

News Updates

NOTICE OF A PUBLIC HEARING

APPLICATION BY ZESCO LIMITED TO REVISE CONNECTION CHARGES The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) would like to inform energy consumers and stakeholders that it shall hold

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