The Energy Sector Levies Act, 2015 (Act 899) as amended (Act 946), was passed into law in 2015, mainly to address the huge debt burden and operational challenges facing State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) in the Energy Sector, support power generation and power supply sustainability, subsidise premix and stabilise petroleum prices, support road maintenance, as well as fund the activities of the Energy Commission.
The Act applied the levies on the price per litre (ppl) /price per kilogram (ppkg) of petroleum, and the price per kilowatt hour (ppkWh) of electricity.
When we took office in 2017, we reduced the electricity levies under the ESLA, from 5.0 percent each on the ppkWh for Public Lighting and National Electrification Levies, to 3.0 percent ppkWh and 2.0 percent ppkWh respectively. This was done to ease the burden of the payment of huge electricity tariffs on Ghanaians and ensure a cheaper and more affordable electricity supply.
We have utilised the funds that accrued from the electricity levies to provide public lighting infrastructure as well as cover the cost of providing public lighting. This has addressed the problem of dark streets in cities and towns within Greater Accra, and other regional capitals nationwide. Transfers into the National Electrification Fund together with other budgetary flows, have also been utilised under the National Electrification Programme to improve access to electricity, by over 84.0 percent as at the end of 2018 in line with the attainment of Goal 7 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all.
The petroleum levies, on the other hand, have been utilised, through E.S.L.A. Plc, to significantly reduce the liabilities of Energy Sector SOEs to keep them running and viable. Proceeds from these levies have also gone into supporting road maintenance and the activities of the Energy Commission.