Double Blow for Consumers

South African and Namibian consumers braced new electricity tariffs hikes, while for South Africans this also included fuel price increases this week, in addition to increases in passenger commuting costs also expected to go into effect in coming weeks. City of Windhoek announced an average increase of 9,2 percent in its electric tariffs as of Tuesday this week, citing inflation and 13,22 percent in bulk electricity purchase tariffs as reasons.

South African municipalities also announced the charging new electricity tariffs yesterday [Tuesday], which are as high as 7 percent more than previous prices. Johannesburg residents are paying 7 percent more, while ten other municipalities – including Cape Town, Tshwane and Buffalo City in Eastern Cape – asked National Energy Regulator of SA (Nersa) for increases ranging between 7.63 percent and 12.11 percent, according to the Cape Town’s proposed 7.63 percent electricity increase would compensate for a fall in its energy sales but additional funds would be needed for the implementation of the city’s new electrification programme. Tshwane’s 9.20 percent increase would go towards “aligning tariffs to Nersa benchmarks”. Rural households are not exempt from the increases. The estimated 296000 residents of the Mpofana and Abaqulusi, in KwaZulu-Natal and of Tswelopele, in the Free State, were yet waiting to know if they have to pay electricity tariff increases of between 8 percent and 15 percent. The price increases are intended to protect revenue, cover high distribution losses, fund a smart metering pilot project, and contribute to costs of electricity infrastructure maintenance and improvement. The power price increases are part of a slew of other hikes.

Tomorrow the price of petrol will increase by 20 cents per litre, bringing the cost of petrol to a near record high of R14.30 per litre. The price of diesel will increase by 13 cents per litre to R12.90 per litre.

Source : New Era