April is shaping up to be a mightily expensive month for South Africa. The already expensive services of DStv, MTN, Vodacom and Telkom have already confirmed their 1 April price hikes for 2023. That’s not even mentioning the CEF’s warnings that petrol drivers could be paying more in April. Now here comes anther increase.
Nersa (the National Energy Regulator of South Africa) has officially finalised Eskom’s plan to implement an average increase of 18.65% for standard customers, with an 18.49% increase for municipalities. The news comes after the regulator held a meeting to discuss Eskom’s Retail Tariff and Structural Adjustment application last week.
Nersa says time to pay more
Standard tariff customers will experience fatter bills come 1 April – when Eskom’s financial year begins. The slightly-less egregious increase for municipalities is only coming into effect from 1 June 2023. Nersa explained their reasoning behind the delay: “The municipalities cannot increase their tariffs in the middle of their financial year, as it would not correspond with the revenue to be achieved from licensed municipal distributors.
Before the final decision was made, Eskom submitted a revised application that would see Homelight 20A customers only receive a 10% increase, which Nersa has accepted. That’s the “good” news – if you’re a Homelight 20A customer, we guess. It gets far, far worse for those Nersa describes as “key industrial and urban customers”.
“Key industrial and urban customers will realise an 18,65% increase plus an additional 7.37c/kWh to cater for the subsidy, which increases from 5.69c/kWh resulting in a 29,53% increase.”
Driving the final nail in the coffin, (until 2024’s absurd increases hit) Nersa mentioned that these increases exclude value-added tax (VAT), which currently sits at 15%.
When the time comes, Eskom will publish the approved Schedule of Standard Prices for 2023/24 on its website and (hopefully) communicate the changes to its customers.
For a full accounting of Nersa’s approved electricity tariffs adjustments for 2023/24, see the table below: