Some light at the end of the tunnel

Karima Brown’s piece Eskom to open door to private producers (Business Day 02-03-2010) reports:

· ESKOM is expected to sign co-generation agreements with independent power producers this month in its first concrete step towards bringing in the private sector to help address SA’s electricity supply shortfall.

· [Public Enterprises Minister Barbara] Hogan said there was “general acceptance” that Eskom could not be the single provider of power.

This is a very welcome change from the monopoly that dominated the electricity market in SA for aeons. Electricity forms the cornerstone of any modern economy and is essential for the ordinary running of households and businesses. The ability to produce a regular constant supply, without any fluctuations, is also essential for promoting and attracting investment. Private sector players will enter the market only if Eskom’s current role of being both referee and player is abolished – if they wish to be able to compete on a fair basis without any bias.

Minister Barbara Hogan is also quoted in this article as saying

· An inter-ministerial review of the role and function of all state-owned enterprises was continuing

This is further good news, perhaps our ailing national carrier SAA will be the first to be reviewed – an entity which has cost the taxpayer over R13 billion in the last decade – money which could have been used for policing, education, health care and myriad other alternatives.”

Source: Karima Brown, Eskom to open door to private producers, Business Day, 2 March, 2010
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HPU Policy Bulletin / 02 March 2010
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