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‘Nersa have tough task to decide on Eskom’s proposed hike’

Salga says with 58% of SA households deemed poor, a 16% increase would be unfavourable.

Electricity transmission pole, with clouds in background. Picture: Freeimages.com
eskom,National Energy Regulator of South Africa NERSA,Nersa,Eskom hikes,Eskom hearings,South African Local Government Association Salga
Local Business

CAPE TOWN – The South African Local Government Association (Salga) says the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) will have a tough task deciding on Eskom's application for a further R22.8 billion.

In a submission at public hearings in Cape Town, the association urged Nersa to put the consumer first.

Electricity tariffs are expected to increase by more than 16 percent if the application is granted.

Salga's Nhlanhla Ngidi says with 58 percent of South African households deemed poor, a 16 percent electricity tariff increase would be unfavourable.

Ngidi says of that 58 percent, those who earn an income are averaging a monthly salary of R2,600.

“These tariffs are going to double eight percent. We cannot as Salga stomach that, which is why we’re calling for Nersa to be very vigilant in its prudence on Eskom’s application.”

ESKOM DEFENDS APPLICATION

The company says it suffered an R11.7 billion loss in the last financial year and needs to recover this money. 

Eskom's Khulu Phasiwe says, “If we exceed that amount in terms of how much we use to purchase diesel and things like that, we’re able to recoup that money, which is why we’re in this situation now.”

Phasiwe adds it needs to recoup the money to replenish diesel reserves and has also cited a multi-billion rand loss in revenue.

Public hearings continue in Cape Town today, with the Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry among the parties to make representations. 

The hearings move to Port Elizabeth tomorrow.

(Edited by Tamsin Wort)

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