Page last updated at 08:59 GMT, Wednesday, 9 April 2008 09:59 UK

Eskom wants power prices doubled

Traffic lights hit by a power cut in Cape Town in January
Traffic lights have been among the casualties of the power cuts

South Africa's state power company Eskom has said electricity prices need to double in the next two years if is to deal with the current power crisis.

The submission to the National Electricity Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) came a week after Eskom resumed its programme of planned power cuts.

It said that the price rises would fund necessary infrastructure upgrades.

Eskom plans to spend 343bn rand (22bn) increasing its generating capacity in the next five years.

Government blamed

It has received government approval for a 14.2% price increase for 2008/9 but has asked for that to be increased to 53%.

In its submission, Eskom said that if its tariffs are accepted the, "the price increase for 2009/10 will be almost 100%".

The company has blamed the problems on the government's failure to invest in electricity generation, maintenance problems at existing plants and wet weather affecting coal supplies.

Power cuts have hit consumers and industry, with mining companies having to shut down for five days in January for fear of leaving workers trapped underground.

African power cuts hit gold firm
25 Feb 08 |  Business
SA budget targets energy crisis
20 Feb 08 |  Africa

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific