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‘Consumer cannot be expected to pick up the slack for Eskom’

Nersa on Friday turned down the parastatal’s application for a 19.9% tariff increase and instead granted a hike of 5.2%.

Nersa’s chairperson of the electricity subcommittee Mbulelo Ncetezo (C) addressing the media in Pretoria. Picture: Katleho Sekhotho/EWN

PRETORIA - The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) says the consumer cannot be expected to pick up the slack when Eskom fails to cut costs.

Nersa on Friday turned down the parastatal’s application for a 19.9% tariff increase and instead granted a hike of 5.2%.

Eskom says its disappointed by the decision, while the Chamber of Mines and Business Unity SA have welcomed it.

Nersa says Friday’s decision is partly based on Eskom predicting higher sales than it can actually reach.

Chairperson of the Electricity Sub-Committee at Nersa Mbulelo Ncetezo says in the past when Eskom was not given what it wanted it started towing the line.

“We do have incentives for Eskom, where if they operate their systems very well we give them those incentives. Incentives are something that we deal with but on the side of penalties, where we say for your expenditure R62 billion, we say no we’re going to give R51 billion (sic).”

At the same time, the Chamber of Mines says while it welcomes the price increase, a structural adjustment programme of the entire electricity sector is needed.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)