Since the 1980s, growth of Uganda’s economy has caused the demand for power to outstrip supply, which led to the introduction of load shedding for several years. Consequently, Uganda passed the Electricity Act of 1999, which led to the creation of the Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) in 2000. ERA’s regulatory governance structure follows established best practices, and it is empowered to facilitate market access through licensing, setting tariffs at economically efficient levels, and developing, promulgating, and monitoring technical standards.
Uganda has set ambitious targets for electricity service expansion of 1.28 million on-grid new service connections and 140,000 additional installations of solar photovoltaic and mini-grid distribution service connections for off-grids. In order to implement this strategy, Uganda and ERA will have to provide for an enabling environment for private investment and improve policy frameworks for the service of rural areas.
Additionally, a fundamental building block to establishing cost reflective tariffs is the standardization of an accounting mechanism between the utility and the regulator in order to support data collection and analysis for tariff design. Aligning accounting principles is essential for ERA to gather accurate information, review proposed tariffs and make well-informed decisions on tariffs as well as power purchase agreements. It is also important that this information be coordinated and harmonized on a regional level to support cross-border trade. Therefore, Uganda is working to develop a Uniform System of Accounts (USoA), as mandated by the Electricity Act.
With support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Power Africa, the Uganda Electricity Regulatory Partnership is uniquely positioned to assist ERA to improve the effectiveness of electricity services.
NARUC supports ERA in its electricity regulation responsibilities in order to enhance its institutional governance and technical capacity. One of USAID’s main objectives in Uganda — improving private sector competitiveness and the enabling environment for business — are the foundation of the Uganda Electricity Regulatory Partnership.
ERA is also a part of NARUC’s East Africa Regional Energy Regulatory Partnership, which aims to increase electricity trade between Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Kenya, and Ethiopia through the harmonization and strengthening of regulatory frameworks.
Project Dates: 2016-Present
Electricty Regulatory Authority
Ugandans Draw Lessons on Regulatory Accounting from African Regulator
With the support of USAID and Power Africa, NARUC linked regulators in Sub-Saharan Africa to help unlock the energy potential of the continent through improved regulatory accounting.
East African Regulators Finalize Key Regulatory Accounting Tools
With the support of USAID and Power Africa, electricity regulators in East Africa have finalized a suite of regulatory accounting tools that will help promote private investment and cross-border trade in the region.
East African Regulators Move Forward On Cross-Border Trade
With USAID and Power Africa assistance, NARUC helped East African regulators find a “common vocabulary” on financial accounting.