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Eskom facing operational and financial challenges

Eskom has admitted that its operational and financial performance has continued to deteriorate in the six months leading to the end of September 2018, with the situation expected to worsen before it improves by 2023.

Releasing the company’s interim financial results for the period under review, the Group chief executive, Phakamani Hadebe, said: “There will be pressure in the short- to medium-term as we transition towards financial and operational sustainability, a move that will require resolute, tough and decisive leadership. Eskom has defined an ambitious turnaround plan, largely within its own control, to improve financial performance by 2023.”

Hadebe said the company is facing severe challenges both operationally and financially. Read more: OUTA comments on Eskom long-term strategy

According to Hadebe, the power utility is currently in a debt-reliant liquidity situation as a result of low tariffs, limited growth in sales, increased costs, and the rising capital investment programme.

In addition to this, the company is facing reduced generation performance, low coal stockpiles, and increases in municipal debt.

Hadebe added: “Notwithstanding the above challenges, Eskom’s Board and executive management team have dedicated their efforts on five key priorities to create a platform for future growth. These include addressing poor governance controls; improving liquidity; ensuring a financially viable entity; completing phase 1 of the of the strategic review, and executing a nine-point generation recovery programme.”

Eskom’s financial situation

Newly appointed chief financial officer, Calib Cassim, said most of Eskom’s financial ratios had deteriorated during the period under review, and that the situation is expected to worsen further in the second half of the financial year.

Babalwa Bungane
Babalwa Bungane is the content producer for ESI Africa - Clarion Events Africa. Babalwa has been writing for the publication for over five years. She also contributes to sister publications; Smart Energy International and Power Engineering International. Babalwa is a social media enthusiast.