Eskom needs R1.7 trillion to survive – energy expert

Eskom needs R1.7 trillion to survive – energy expert

Energy and mining strategist Ted Blom says Finance Minister Tito Mboweni would need to provide Eskom with a R1.7 trillion cash injection to rescue the cash-strapped power utility.


Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will deliver his Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement, also known as the mini budget, in the National Assembly on Wednesday.

The state-owned power utility is sitting with debts of R450 billion.

Blom says it’s clear that the government does not have the required R1.7 billion to fix Eskom.

“The Ministry of Finance has a very difficult task ahead of them because it is aware of the money that would be required to fix Eskom up.

“Eskom is running so bad that they do not have safety margins. The worldwide safety margins for operations is around 15% to meet capacity. Eskom is running at less than 5% to meet its capacity, so it is a disaster waiting to happen.”

On Tuesday, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan gave an update on Eskom’s restructuring plans, saying that the utility needs to generate more money and increase electricity sales.


Meanwhile, Eskom board member Busisiwe Mavuso told Parliament’s appropriations committee on Tuesday that political interference is hampering their effort to fix the power crisis.

“If we are given the latitude to actually make decisions without political interference as this board, I would tell you what we would do,” she told MPs.

“We would go to South Africans and tell them: ‘Honestly, we need to load shed for at least the next eight months’.”

READ: Gordhan unveils rescue plan for ailing Eskom

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