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Eskom infrastructure upgrade

07-06-2012 03:18 BJT

Africa's largest economy south Africa is feeling the heat from a shortfall in the supply of power as industrialization outpaces electricity generation.. So just what is Eskom, the country's power utility and the largest electricity company in Africa doing to try and bridge the gap? CCTV'S Angelo Coppola spoke to the chief executive, Brian Daamess and filed this report.

Dames was upbeat about the unlisted state owned enterprise progress. In terms of your financial results for the year, they have been pretty impressive - can you describe them from a financial and operational point of view.

Brian Daamess said, "It was very important to put the company in a sound financial footing and really deal with keeping the lights on. It's a very important role and in supporting growth. Financially we delivered a profit of R13.2bn and funded our build programme. We have seen significant progress in the build programmed. We completed two return-to-service stations, and completed two thirds of the other one, and we have had the first boiler pressure test at Medupi.

So that is well under way and well under control, and on track. Eskom has also achieved its developmental objectives.

Brian Daamess said, " We have a very important role, in that we need to transform this country, both in terms of bringing access to electricity - 155 000 households got electricity for the first time. And in driving black economic empowerment: Some 72% or R72bn has been spent on that. Together with the training."

In terms of your infrastructure build programme, is it on track and what happens after the commissioning of the Ingula power station?

Brian Daamess said, “ We have delivered 5700 megawatts since we started, from an assignment of 17000 megawatts. Medupi (power station) is the first one, and we said that the first unit at the end of next year, it is still the case, and that will be commissioned over the next few years, and Kusile (power station) at the end of 2014.

Leading up to about 2019 and Ingula in 2014. What are your plans then?

Brian Daamess said, "Beyond that we really get into the integrated resource plan of South Africa. That will call for additional renewable, and we are now starting to see being rolled out by the private sector. Eskom will start its first renewable project this year - the first big wind farm, moving to solar over the next few years, and then beyond that we are talking about the further coal, further gas and nuclear from that perspective. "

Eskom says that they will take their learnings in their electrification programme and share these with their African counterparts. Dames says that they hope to bring the utilities together to drive access to electricity and focus on renewables expansion.

Editor:James |Source: CNTV

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