- Average Customer Average Interruption Duration Index (CAIDI) was 4.63 hours
- Uganda and Rwanda have 18, followed by Tanzania at 20 days per annum.
Power interruption in Kenya takes up to seven hours against a global average of 1.36 hours, leading to losses running into millions, according to industry regulator.
The Energy and Petroleum Statistics Report 2021 released on Thursday by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) wants Kenya Power to cut the interruption period.
"The high loss of power is a clear indication that much more needs to be done to improve on the reliability of power supply to customers,'' EPRA acting director economic regulation and strategy John Mutua said.
He however said between January 2020 to December 2020, the average Customer Average Interruption Duration Index (CAIDI) was 4.63 hours while System Average Frequency Index (SAIFI) per month was 2.13 hours
''The low SAIFI and CAIDI recorded over the period is a manifestation of the vast upgrade of the transmission and distribution system by the government,'' Mutua said.
EPRA's report reflects similar findings by the International Energy Agency (IEA) which shows Kenyan households and factories are plunged into darkness for an average of 25 days annually due to blackouts.
According to the Paris-based agency, Kenya experiences more than 600 hours of outages per annum compared to 120 hours or five days per year in South Africa
Kenya also lags behind its peers in power efficiency, with Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania reporting an average of 19 days of power outages per annum.
Uganda and Rwanda have 18, followed by Tanzania at 20 days per annum.
The agency blames the blackouts on Kenya Power’s dilapidated grid network, forcing investors and families to invest in diesel-powered standby generators and solar backup power systems.
The blackouts result in Kenya Power losing 5.5 per cent of annual power sales. Last year, Kenya Power had sales revenue of Sh144.1 billion, meaning power outages cost the retailer close to Sh3 billion.
In Sub-Saharan Africa, unreliable power and outages outages cost some companies as much as 31 per cent in sales, according to a new study by the Centre for Global Development.
The organisation examined data from more than 3,000 firms in 37 African countries to determine how businesses across Sub-Saharan Africa respond to frequent power outages, and what it means for their businesses’ bottom lines and growth prospects.
Although no research has ever approximated the value of power interruptions on the country's economy, a survey on the cost of power outages on enterprises in Kenya by the International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) two years ago paints a sorry picture.
"Since electricity accounts for more than 95 per cent of energy sources used by firms in Kenya as an input in production, its unreliability poses great challenges to the performance of business enterprises,"says the survey.
According to the report, Trans Nzoia has the highest number of power outages with a mean of 11.15 followed by Kisumu at 10.34 per month.
Enterprises in Nairobi experience an average of about 8.2 power interruptions per month.
''This is a serious issue given that Nairobi is the business hub not just for Kenya but, the East Africa region and that electricity is very critical in production and service delivery for almost all enterprises,'' IJRISS said.
Other regions with the high power outages include Mombasa with a mean of 7.06, Kilifi 6.59, Machakos at 5.8, and Kirinyaga with a mean of 5.1.
On average, any given enterprise has 6.7 times power outages per month.