Solar energy experts return to "ambitious South Africa""The Solar Future" South Africa conference to return in February 2013
Leading solar energy conference organisers, Solarplaza, have decided to return to South Africa in February 2013, based on the success of their first 2012 event.
"The conference in January 2012 was the first of its kind for us in South Africa, and it was a tremendous success," says Edwin Koot, CEO of Solarplaza. "Having organised over 40 of these around the world, we were impressed by South Africa's ambition, commitment and involvement, and it bodes well for the future of solar in the country."
Koot notes that Solarplaza is determined to make the second edition of "The Solar Future" South Africa, which will take place in Cape Town this time, bigger and better. Last year's event drew over a hundred high profile business leaders, global energy experts, and representatives from government.
Koot adds that the focus for 2013 will be the potential of solar and its competition position as an alternative energy source as well as how companies can tap into solar without depending on government tenders and subsidies: "We will also pay attention to how solar, as an alternative energy source, can be best marketed."
Some of the parties that have confirmed their attendance for next year's event include representatives from the Department of Energy and Eskom, international solar PV guru and entrepreneur Jigar Shah, and Dick Berlijn.
Berlijn, managing director of Pretoria-based solar electricity development firm Subsolar Energy and a returning speaker, says he is looking forward to the event: "The January conference was a balance event, both South African and non-South African visitors. It provided a platform for constructive discussions on solar lessons learned in other countries and the opportunities to lie in South Africa."
Berlijn is most looking forward to particularly the sessions that deal with solar beyond the subsidized programs. "As an industry we have to prove our sustainability and we have to make sure that we create new business cases, and reach new off-takers so we are no longer dependent on government programs," he says, noting that conferences like "The Solar Future" are necessary in South Africa where plans for large-scale solar projects yet have to be put into practice.
"We received a collective 8 on the scale of 10 from the participants at the January 2012 event. It was one of our most successful solar conferences so far. We're coming back to do even better", Koot concludes.
Release Date: Dec 17, 2012
Name: Paul van der Linden
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