Energy supply in Namibia does not meet demand. In the decade to 2017, Namibia imported nearly 60% of its electricity supply, mostly from South Africa where electricity is predominantly produced using coal, as well as Zimbabwe and Zambia.
As of 2012, access to electricity in urban areas was 94%, but only 15% in rural areas. The National Energy Policy (2017), acknowledges the constraints that a lack of sufficient energy supply imposes on GDP growth and has outlined measures to increase investment in energy infrastructure, research and development and to enhance energy efficiency awareness.
Imported liquid fuels, including petrol and diesel, dominate the energy mix in Namibia. Oil products accounted for 68% of total final energy consumption in 2020 and are predominantly used in the transport sector, which is unsurprising given that Namibia’s territory is vast, with mining, industry and trading activity centred in relatively isolated pockets of urbanisation that are widely dispersed.
Electricity follows with 19% of net consumption, which is largely generated by hydropower and solar PV. Biofuels and waste, mostly traditional biomass, accounted for 12% of final consumption and supply nearly all energy in the building sector.