The policy of electricity deregulation has drawn criticism in certain corners of the country. Some argue that it has failed to lower electricity rates as promised, while others are concerned about confusion about the way the market functions.

But from an outside perspective, electricity deregulation is seen as an effective way of spurring the development of new businesses. Creamer Media's Engineering News reports that many in South Africa have begun pushing for the government to open up competition in the energy industry.

"Energy is needed to grow and we have to ensure that we have it in abundance so that investors, seeking secure, affordable power, will invest and build factories in South Africa," Pete da Silva, CEO of electricity company Jasco, told the news source.

Electricity deregulation is seen as an effective way to spur the development of smart grids and renewable electricity, two important emerging industries, and could provide an important economic boost.

GreentechMedia reports that the U.S. has seen strong support particularly for wind power in areas with electricity deregulation, particularly in the nation's leader in wind energy, Texas.