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Business Chamber welcomes Nersa decision

The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber welcomes the decision by the national energy regulator to keep the electricity tariffs in South Africa at an affordable rate.

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) announced its decision on Eskom’s revenue application for the 2018/19 financial year today [Friday, 15 December 2017].

The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber was one of many stakeholders to give input during public hearings hosted across South Africa in November, and also made written submissions to Nersa on behalf of organised business in Nelson Mandela Bay.

“We have a strong mandate to lobby and advocate on behalf of our members, and have done so on this very pertinent issue of electricity tariff increases for many years. Whether in court, in public hearings or in closed meetings, we will continue to champion the rights of local businesses to have access to quality electricity that are priced cost-effectively to ensure the sustainability of businesses in the Metro,” said Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber CEO Nomkhita Mona.

Eskom’s application to increase electricity tariffs to a general increase of 19.9% and an increase to the municipality of 27.5% had been widely condemned during last month’s public hearings. We thank all our Nelson Mandela Bay partners who supported us in the campaign against unsustainable electricity increases.

“In particular, we thank the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, who took the unprecedented step of presenting at the Nersa public hearing in Nelson Mandela Bay. We also thank our other partners Agri Eastern Cape and the Energy Intensive Users Group. Our voices have been heard as a united front,” Mona said.

These Nelson Mandela Bay stakeholders all lobbied for a tariff increase that is contained to levels of inflation, or below.

“As the Business Chamber we are relieved by Nersa’s decision to only grant Eskom a 5.23% average price increase – given the difficult economic climate in the country. The public cannot be penalised for Eskom’s inefficiencies as a result of maladministration and governance failures.”

“We call on government to address Eskom’s non-performance as a matter of urgency, in order to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive in,” Mona said.