SA needs higher electricity tariffs, IMF says

Business Day Live – ESKOM’S request for an additional electricity tariff increase on Tuesday got unexpected support from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which said the hike was necessary to make the utility financially sustainable.

The global lender warned that power outages were the biggest obstacle to SA’s economic growth and suggested strict conditions for the tariff hike.

“Higher electricity tariffs and the envisaged government support are necessary to make Eskom financially sustainable, but should be complemented by cost containment, including through improved procurement, efficiency enhancements, and governance improvements to minimise the impact on consumers and business costs,” the IMF said.

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How electricity powers the revenue of municipalities

Mail & Guardian – Electricity has become an emotionally charged subject thanks to Eskom’s problems, the resultant load-shedding and the price hikes consumers have experienced over the past few years.

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) has approved a guideline increase of 12.2% for municipalities, which came into effect at the beginning of this month, over and above the hike Eskom has been granted.

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How to save on your Eskom electricity bill

My Broadband – Eskom’s acting CEO Brian Molefe has given South Africans two options: pay more for electricity or face more load shedding – which will damage the economy.

On 8 May, Eskom made an urgent application to Nersa to increase the electricity tariff by 25.3% for the 2015/2016 financial year. This included the 12.69% price increase Nersa had already approved.

Local municipalities have also requested price increases, with Mookgophong municipality in Limpopo applying for a 35% tariff hike.

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Transnet’s CFO seconded to Eskom

Cape Business News – Transnet’s Group Chief Financial Officer Anoj Singh has been seconded to Eskom as its acting Chief Financial Officer.

“The Boards of Directors at Transnet and Eskom have agreed to second Transnet Group Chief Financial Officer, Anoj Singh, as acting Chief Financial Officer to Eskom for a period of six months,” said the boards of Eskom and Transnet.

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What exactly is Eskom asking from Nersa?

Moneyweb – Re-opener of MYPD3 tariff determination may be on the cards.

The national energy regulator (Nersa) expects to know by the end of the week whether Eskom wants a total review of Nersa’s earlier decision to grant Eskom an 8% annual tariff increase for the five years from 2013/14 to 2017/18 (MYPD3).

Eskom at the time applied for an annual increase of 16% and while it chose not to take the decision on review it has blamed the regulator ever since for its financial woes and a revenue shortfall of R225 billion.

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‘We have to ensure it keeps the lights on’

Business Day Live – ELECTRICITY regulator Thembani Bukula says last week’s reversal of the decision not to allow Eskom to retrieve from consumers the billions it is spending on diesel for its open-cycle gas turbines was not the result of government pressure.

Coinciding with this change of tune came the announcement that his boss, the CEO of the National Energy Regulator of South Africa, Phindile Baleni, had decided to quit to become director-general in the department of the Gauteng premier.

Speculation is that Baleni, wife of National Union of Mineworkers boss Frans Baleni, was unhappy with Nersa’s decision to reverse its previous determination and pass Eskom’s diesel costs on to the consumer.

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Peak pricing pilot promising – Eskom

Woman24 – Early results from a pilot project, which charges customers higher rates for power on selected peak demand days, are “very promising”, Eskom says.

Johannesburg – Early results from a pilot project, which charges customers higher rates for power on selected peak demand days, are “very promising”, Eskom says.

“The critical peak day pricing is a pricing option Eskom is currently piloting with customers who have opted into the pilot,” Eskom’s media desk said.

The pilot project began in October 2013 and would run until October this year.

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ANC opts to keep Eskom in one piece

Business Day Live – THE African National Congress (ANC) decided at its annual lekgotla last week to sink the Independent System Market Operator Bill that would have led to the restructuring of the electricity sector.

SA’s energy shortfall was a major focus of discussion at the four-day meeting of top leaders of the ruling party, which has been sending out conflicting signals for years on the future shape of the electricity industry.

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