Load shedding probability low: Eskom

JUNE 1, 2015

Power utility, Eskom says the load shedding prognosis for this afternoon is low. The announcement follows almost four days today with Eskom not having to implement load shedding to avert total grid collapse.

Meanwhile, the SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry is busy conducting a survey amongst its members on the potential impact that Eskom's proposed tariff hike will have on their businesses. 

The National Energy Regulator says it will only announce its final decision on Eskom’s application for a 25.3% tariff increase for the current financial year at the end of June.

Acting SACCI CEO, Peggy Droskie, told Algoa FM News that Eskom is seeking a tariff adjustment over and above what the regulator has also approved in terms of the Multi-Year- Price-Determination 3 (MYPD3).

She said, if granted, this will be bring the electricity tariff increase to 25.3% in July.

Droskie said most of their members previously reported devastating effects on their businesses. She said that for small and medium businesses, electricity is a significant input cost. 

"Previously when it was the MYPD2, we did a similar survey and we found that a significant number of our members would either have to retrench staff or that they would not employ any new staff.  Some of them even said that increase at that time, which was much less than what is proposed now, would cause them to close their doors," she said.

Droskie said Sacci thought that with the increase that is being propsosed now and which has been put before Nersa (National Energy Regulator of South Africa) we need to indicate what the actual impact of that increase in that electricity tariff would be.

"We are waiting for those responses to come in so that we can analyse them and give a full report to Nersa when they hold their public participation meetings on what the economic impact of that increase would be," she said.

Nersa is encouraging members of the public to actively participate in this process by submitting written comments and attending or making oral representation at the public hearings to be held from 23 to 24 June 2015.

Eskom’s application was published on its website today, after some confidential sections were removed.

The public will have until June 15.

Public hearings will be held for two days around June 24 and Nersa hopes to take a final tariff determination on June 29.

Thereafter Eskom will have to translate the average increase into detailed tariffs that Nersa has to approve before it can be implemented.

Municipalities will have to translate it into their own tariff systems and only after these tariffs have been approved by Nersa, will municipal tariff increases be approved.

*Written comments can be forwarded to [email protected] or hand-delivered to Kulawula House, 526 Madiba Street, Arcadia, Pretoria or posted to PO Box 40343, Arcadia, 0083, Pretoria, South Africa.

The closing date for written comments is June 15 2015 at 16H00.