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Philips SA to open light bulb plant in Lesotho

An energy-saving light bulb manufacturing plant is to be built in Lesotho in a bid to help South Africans reduce their electricity consumption.

Philips South Africa and Minerals & Energy Minister Buyelwa Sonjica announced the partnership which will see the country meet the growing need in energy efficient lighting solutions.

The plant is also expected to stimulate economic development.

The facility will be set up jointly with Central Energy Fund (CEF), a private company owned by government under the Department of Minerals, and Karebo Systems, a privately-owned company specialising in Demand Side Management initiatives in the lighting and energy sectors.

Luc Escoute General Manager of Philips SA Lighting Sector appealed to South Africans to use compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) instead of the older, energy-intensive incandescent bulbs which use up more electricity: "We are happy that this new facility will enable our region to manufacture energy saving bulbs that will help to overcome energy shortages and combat global warming.”

CEF Group Chief Executive Mputumi Damane said this joint venture will help to secure a sufficient supply of these light bulbs to meet the country's ambitious targets in electricity reduction, especially in the residential sector.

“CEF, through our divisions, the Energy Development Corporation and the National Energy Efficiency Agency, is playing a leading role in the quest for renewable and alternative energy sources as well as promoting the development of energy efficiency initiatives," he said.

The market for CFL bulbs is growing rapidly globally and is expected to accelerate in the South African region through the efforts of the national government to significantly reduce energy consumption.

Peter Kgame, Managing Director of Karebo Systems said in the efforts to significantly reduce energy consumption in South Africa, switching to energy efficient lighting was the quickest and easiest way to make a significant contribution.

“With Philips' expertise in this field, we bring the high quality energy saving light bulbs this country desperately needs" he said.

The facility is scheduled to produce up to 15 million CFL lamps per year.

On Tuesday Philips SA has also signed the Energy Efficiency Accord, an agreement which sees business leaders voluntarily agreeing to implement the National Energy Efficiency Strategy as set by the Department of Minerals and Energy of South Africa.

This was to demonstrate their commitment to the government's call for action and the confidence it has in its ability to make significant inroads in reducing energy consumption through its energy-saving products and its environmentally-sound business practices.

Article published courtesy of BuaNews

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