Civil action group, Outa says that Eskom’s application to energy regulator Nersa for a 32% price hike in 2023 will end up being closer to 38% once backlogs and court-ordered increases are taken into account.
Outa said this hike would be a slap in the face of customers and businesses who continue to suffer under lad shedding, which hit stage 6 load shedding for the second time this year over the weekend, with warnings of ‘unprecedented outages’ yet to come.
“As the country buckles under stage 6 load shedding, Eskom is coming back to citizens of South Africa to ask for more money. It is outrageous that people are being asked to pay when services are not delivered,” Outa said.
“Businesses, public services, and households are being significantly disrupted by the now-routine load shedding. Eskom seems to assume that electricity consumers are a captive audience from which it can demand money while failing to supply a service.”
“Outa calls on Nersa to grant a maximum of a consumer price index (CPI) tariff increase; if the economy is to recover from Covid, electricity needs to be kept to an affordable level in order to be an economic enabler,” said Outa
Eskom’s business interests should not come before the needs of ordinary South Africans as they risk crippling the economy. “The calculations presented by NERSA outlining that Eskom receive increases of 38% this year cannot be acceptable at any time, never mind in the time of recovering from Covid.”
Eskom applied for a total renewable revenue of R334. 676 billion for 2023/24; this includes R317.696bn to be raised from standard tariff customers (everyone except the big customers with negotiated price agreements). The price is calculated from the allowable revenue and the predicted energy sale.
Nersa says Eskom’s application, plus three additional amounts since it was filed, could result in a price of R202.29c per kilowatt hour, an increase of 38.10% on the current price.
Source: Business Tech, OUTA, image from Twitter