Tax Payer Coughs up R17.6 Billion to Service Eskom Debts

  • Yesterday Treasury officials briefed a joint sitting of the standing and select committees on appropriations on the 2019 Appropriations Bill.
  • They reported that South Africa’s Finance Minister, Mr Tito Mboweni authorised a R17.6bn allocation to Eskom in April.
  • The Finance Minister had to evoke a section of the Public Management Finance Act to authorise funding in emergency situations because the power utility faced difficulty in servicing its debts.

‘The R17.65bn allocation, which is the maximum amount allowed by the PFMA in emergency situations, follows the delay of the R7bn funds committed by the China Development Bank and the decline by the Corporation for Public Deposits to provide a bridging facility,’ the statement read.

The approval of R17.6bn funding is part of the R23bn allocated to the power utility in the 2019 national budget.

Treasury plans to table a Special Appropriations Bill for additional funds to support state-owned companies later this year. The committees want the bill to be accompanied with clear plans on Eskom’s unbundling process and plans on how to address other challenges at the entity. Read more

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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