How to Apply for a License to Transmit, Distribute or Generate power in Kenya

5 min


Distributed generation refers to a variety of technologies that generate electricity at or near where it will be used, such as solar panels and combined heat and power. … In the residential sector, common distributed generation systems include: Solar photovoltaic panels. Small wind turbines

Any person intending to engage in the business of transmission,Distribution or generation of electricity in the republic of Kenya shall make a written application to the Ministry of Energy and petroleum requesting for a license through the Energy Regulatory Commission.


Step 1

Any person intending to engage in the business of transmission,Distribution or generation of electricity in the republic of Kenya shall make a written application to the Ministry of Energy and petroleum requesting for a license through the Energy Regulatory Commission. The licensing Authority may stipulate such conditions as the licensee may think fit to Cary out a feasibility study to check the market and industry condition and ascertain if they can meet the industry requirements. Then Fill the form and return the same to the same commission head office. it is important to give information that will satisfy the commission that the applicant can meet the relevant license condition and has the technical and financial capability to comply with the terms and conditions of the license.

Step 2
Before an application is accepted it must fulfill certain requirements specified by the Energy Regulatory Commission and this must be attached on the application form.The next step for the applicant is to attach the necessary documents on the application form and on this stage they need to furnish the Energy Regulatory Commission with sufficient information to enable the commission to make a full assessment of the suitability of the Applicant to hold the Licence.The following information is required.

  • the legal and financial status of the applicant;
  • a technical and economic description of the project;
  • description of how the projects fit in with the existing and planned power – supply system;
  • the planned time of commencement and completion of the construction of the project;
  • a view of the projects adaptation to the landscape, including necessary maps and drawings;
  • the impact of the project on public interest and possible mitigation;
  • the results and reports of assessments, including environmental impact assessments, and any other studies carried out;the potential impacts of the project on private interests , including the interests of affected landowners and other rights holders; and all relevant consents and permits required under any other law.

Step 3

Therefore, a draft application must be sent to Energy Regulatory Commission for a preliminary scrutiny. If Energy Regulatory Commission finds the content of the draft sufficient to start the licensing procedures, the applicant must send a final application to Energy Regulatory Commission,and another copy to Ministry of Energy and petroleum accompanied by such fee as may be prescribed under sub section of Power Act 314. Any person intending to apply for licence to transmit Distribute or generate shall duly comply with the conditions and requirements laid down by the Energy Regulatory Commission of Kenya.Step 4

The submit the a completed application form along with the relevant documents and the processing fees to the commission.indicating clearly that the primary business is the supply of electrical energy for sale Provided that where- (i) the rated capacity of the generating plant does not exceed 25 kilowatts in the case of a public or local authority and 100 kilowatts in the case of a company, person or body of persons and the pressure in any part of the system connected thereto does not exceed medium pressure; and (ii)no part of such system is outside the close or curtilage of the premises in which the electrical energy is generated,Step 5

When the commission receives the Application ,it will crosscheck to see if all the required documents are included on the application form then it will inform the applicant the all the requirement are meant and it will note thereon the date of its recipient and will send to the applicant the acknowledgment stating the date of receipt.Step 6

In Case the application has some missing documents , the commission may upon review the application require the applicant to furnish more within the period specified on it,any additional information provided however that the time between the receipt of the application and accompanying document and the date on which the commission notifies the Applicant of the inediquency of the document shall not exceed 30 days

No public or local authority within the area of supply of an authorized distributor may, after having been offered a supply of electrical energy by such authorized distributor, use any form of energy for power or lighting purposes (excepting portable power and portable lighting purposes) other than electrical energy without the approval of the Minister, which approval shall not be refused in any case in which the Minister is satisfied that the public or local authority concerned will be unduly prejudiced by such refusal.Step 7

The applicant is required to publish notice and furnish the commission with the copy of each notice. Within six months after the receipt of such application and after such inquiry as he thinks necessary, the Minister may grant the application on such terms and conditions and for such period as he thinks fit, or may refuse the application :Step 8

The commission will then consider the information in the application and the responses in the published notice and decides whether to grant the applicant a license if everything is in order.A bulk supply licence may be for any period not exceeding fifty years, and the bulk supply licensee may,within ten years of the date named in a bulk supply licence for its termination, make application to the Minister for a renewal of such bulk supply licence, provided that such application shall be made not less than three years before the date named for the termination of the licence.Step 9

The commission then grants the license to the applicant upon payment of the license fee to the commission by the applicant.Where any demand is made by an authorized distributor for a supply of electrical energy within a compulsory area, or otherwise where the bulk supply licensee is authorized by the Minister to give a supply of electrical energy within a compulsory area, the bulk supply licensee within a reasonable time or within such time as may be stated in the licence or as may be authorized by the Minister as provided for by section 129, shall lay, erect and install all the electric supply lines and works necessary for the supply of the electrical energy in terms of the demand or of the authority of the Minister, as the case may be.Note

  • Every application for a licence made to the Commission shall be in writing accompanied by the non – refundable Application Processing Fees as specified in the Schedules. The license fee to be paid shall be as specified in the Schedules
  • The Fees payable under these Regulations shall be paid by means of bank draft or cheque drawn in favour

Required Documents

  • List and Particulars of Directors.
  • List and Particulars of Shareholders
  • Certificate of Registration.
  • Certificate of Incorporation.
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • Deed of Partnership, Deed of Trust, as applicable.
  • Name and details of Contact Person.
  • Name of Proposed Business


  • All Individuals or companies interested in Transmitting Power, Distribution and generating power and other related products are eligible provided they have registered with the (ERC)Energy regulatory Commission.
  • the Minister may authorize any public or local authority, company, person or body of persons,whether within any such area of supply or not, to generate or, subject to the provisions of the Electric Supply Lines Act.


The Annual Operating Fee payable is charged in accordance with the rates specified in the Schedules.

Where the Operating Fee is not paid within the time specified in the terms and conditions of the license, surcharge shall be payable on the amount due at the rate of 1% per week up to a maximum period of 12(twelve)weeks after which period the Commission shall apply appropriate penalties in accordance with the terms and conditions of the license.

Category A. KV 330 to 132 KV

  • Application Fees Ksh.100,000
  • License Fees Ksh


To be able to generate power for your own use (Captive Power Generation), you need to apply for a PERMIT.

Required Information

  • Names, Physical and Postal Address of Applicant
  • Legal Status of the Applicant
  • List and Particulars of Shareholders;
  • Certificate of Registration,
  • Certificate of Incorporation,
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • Deed of Partnership,
  • Deed of Trust, as applicable
  • information if the shareholder has ever been convicted of a criminal offence in Kenya or in any other country.
  • List and Particulars of Directors.
  • information if you have ever acquired a licence and state the nature of the licence, date issued and the licence number

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Need for the Document

Energy Regulatory Commission(ERC) was established under the Energy Act, 2006. Following the operationalization of the Energy Act, 2006, with effect from July 7 2007, the Electricity Regulatory Board (ERB) became Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) with the following objectives and


(i)-Regulate the electrical energy,

(ii)Regulate the petroleum and related products,

(iii)Regulate the renewable energy and other forms of energy.

Electricity generation in Kenya is liberalized with several licensed electric power producers in the country.

Section 11 of the Electric Power Sector Act 314 provides that any person intending to engage in the business of electricity generation, transmission, system operation, distribution or trading shall be required to obtain an operator’s licence from the Energy regulatory Commission.

To be able to Transmit, Distribute or Generate power for sale, you need to apply for a LICENCE from Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) In performing its function, the commissions primary focus is balancing the interest of market participants and the protection of Kenyan consumer interest with respect to price,quality and consistency of power supply.

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