Eskom mum on liq­uid as­sets

Daily Dispatch - - News - By ERNEST MABUZA

ESKOM has re­fused to say how much it has in liq­uid as­sets‚ but said its fi­nan­cial po­si­tion was not where it should be or could be.

“What I can con­firm is that our po­si­tion is not where it should or could be. Our rev­enue is low be­cause of low elec­tric­ity de­mand caused by low eco­nomic growth‚” Eskom spokesman Khulu Pasiwe said yes­ter­day.

A re­port by EE Pub­lish­ers yes­ter­day stated that a re­port from Eskom to its share­hold­ers for the sec­ond quar­ter end­ing on Septem­ber 30, painted a pic­ture of fund­ing dif­fi­cul­ties.

The re­port said with­out fur­ther fund­ing‚ Eskom would have only R1.2-bil­lion in liq­uid as­sets at the end of this month and would move into neg­a­tive liq­uid­ity of about R5­bil­lion by the end of Jan­uary.

Pasiwe said Eskom would re­lease its in­terim re­sults be­fore the end of the month‚ where the true fi­nan­cial sit­u­a­tion of the power util­ity would be re­vealed. He added Eskom’s sales growth had been de­clin­ing for a num­ber of years.

He said op­er­at­ing costs re­mained very high in re­la­tion to pur­chas­ing elec­tric­ity from in­de­pen­dent power pro­duc­ers. “We spent R21-bil­lion buy­ing elec­tric­ity from in­de­pen­dent power pro­duc­ers last year. This is up from R15-bil­lion the year be­fore. How­ever, our own costs of pro­duc­ing en­ergy from coal and diesel are go­ing down.”

Pasiwe said Eskom had not been sit­ting with its arms crossed.

“We are tar­get­ing mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties which owe us. Cur­rently mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties owe Eskom R11.2-bil­lion in ar­rears debt.”

Eskom was also try­ing to re­coup money through the Reg­u­la­tory Clear­ing Ac­count (RCA).

The RCA is a mon­i­tor­ing and track­ing mech­a­nism that com­pares cer­tain un­con­trol­lable costs and rev­enues as­sumed in the mul­ti­year price de­ter­mi­na­tion made by the en­ergy reg­u­la­tor to ac­tual costs and rev­enue in­curred by Eskom.

Pasiwe said it had iden­ti­fied R54­bil­lion that could be re­couped through the RCA process.

Eskom would also at­tempt to speak to the Cham­ber of Mines and busi­ness to in­crease elec­tric­ity us­age. Eskom was also ask­ing the Na­tional En­ergy Reg­u­la­tor of South Africa for a tar­iff in­crease of 19.9%‚ up from the cur­rent 2.2% in­crease granted by the reg­u­la­tor‚ Pasiwe said. “We also need to im­prove our ef­fi­cien­cies. Where we are able to cut costs‚ we will be able to do so. But we are not look­ing at re­trench­ments as a mea­sure.”

Pasiwe also de­nied the re­port by EE Pub­lish­ers that Eskom was in dis­cus­sions with banks to pro­vide short-term cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture of R5-bil­lion to R10-bil­lion un­til fund­ing is­sues were re­solved.

“Our fundrais­ing ef­forts had been on­go­ing as we are try­ing to raise R337-bil­lion for new build pro­grammes.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.