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'New board should reposition Eskom'

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan says the draft Integrated Resources Plan is a game changer, and Eskom should be looking at ways to meet this vision.

FILE: Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan says the job of the new Eskom board is not only to clean up the business but also to completely reposition it.

He says this is necessary to keep up with global technological advances and to respond to the new draft Integrated Resources Plan which puts renewable energy sources at the centre of the country’s energy mix until 2030.

Addressing Parliament’s public enterprises and energy committees on Tuesday, Gordhan said nothing prohibited Eskom from also becoming a renewable energy supplier.

Gordhan says the draft Integrated Resources Plan is a game changer, and Eskom should be looking at ways to meet this vision.

He’s challenged the new board to look at ways in which Eskom can include renewable energy in its portfolio alongside coal and nuclear, and in so doing also create competition in the market.

“We should all be thinking about the question what Eskom will look like in 10 years’ time. If not five years’ time... in terms of structure, function, sources of electricity, the manner in which electricity is distributed and so on.”

Gordhan says he’s satisfied that the new board is committed to setting Eskom on a different path, but its immediate challenge is to reposition the business to make it a sustainable entity again.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)