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South Africa 07 December 2022

Electricity Tracker

Shireen Darmalingam

  • This report tracks power utility Eskom’s ability to supply power to the grid, demand for electricity, and the consumption of electricity. It reviews Eskom’s Energy Availability Factor (EAF) as well as how unplanned outages are affecting the current status of power supply in SA.
  • Rolling blackouts continue despite the announcement of energy reforms to try and end intermittent outages. Supply cuts have been implemented for the past 11 months, with a record number of load-shedding days.
  • Eskom recently released its Medium-Term System Adequacy Outlook for 2023 (MTAO2023). The MTSAO measures the power system’s ability to meet demand over the next five years. This report painted a negative outlook for 2023-2027, and noted that power cuts are expected to continue throughout 2023 as the power utility struggles with the carrying out of planned maintenance whilst having to contend with internal issues and sabotage.
  • Demand has softened in the quarter to date while the power utility’s fleet exhibits no sign of improved generation capacity despite the reforms announced recently – resulting in increased unplanned outages.
  • Electricity consumed is estimated to have been around 0,2% lower in November than October and was down 2,5% on average in Q3:22 from the previous quarter. The EAF averaged around 57% in November, which remains below the YtD average (59%) notwithstanding the utility’s effort to improve EAF to a target of 75%.
  • The SARB has estimated that loadshedding will shave off 0.6 percentage points from GDP growth in 2023 (estimate for 2022 is 1 percentage point).

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