Following a recent Supreme Court of Appeal ruling, Eskom will effectively be able to ask for a 50% increase in electricity tariffs for the 2018-19 financial year, according to Rapport.
This is because the appeals court has ruled that two requests for price increases which have been with the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) since 2015 may now be processed.
It also ruled that a previous victory in the High Court against a proposed 9.4% price increase, which the court found should have been 3.5%, be set aside.
Eskom’s draft tariff increase request for next year has also leaked, stated the Rapport. In it, the utility asks for a 19.9% increase, and a 27.29% increase in the tariffs that municipalities pay.
Energy expert Chris Yelland told Rapport that the two tariff increase applications which may now be processed amount to R43 billion. He also expects Eskom to apply for another tariff adjustment later this year.
Combining the increases, Yelland estimated that it would mean a 50% increase in South Africa’s electricity tariffs.
Although Nersa has only approved half of Eskom’s requested tariff adjustments in recent years, Yelland said that a 25% increase will be a price shock to the economy.