Four Eskom power plants have less than 10 days' coal

Four Eskom power plants have fewer than 10 days of coal, with the power utility planning on trucking and railing supplies from a facility in the Limpopo province to the stations in Mpumalanga that’s about 400 kilometers away.

The constraints at the plants in Mpumalanga are mainly because the company that supplies them is under business rescue, Khulu Phasiwe, a spokesperson for Eskom told SAFm radio Monday. The plants are supplied by mines owned by Tegeta Exploration and Resources, a company linked the Gupta family. 

Eskom plans to transport coal from its delayed Medupi power plant in Limpopo to the facilities in Mpumalanga, and plans to build an alternative, dirt road to move the fuel so as not to compromise existing freeways, Phasiwe said. The utility is also in talks with state rail company Transnet to move the coal by train.

Oakbay said in August that it agreed to sell Tegeta for R2.97bn to Swiss company Charles King SA. The disposal was expected to be concluded in 12 months, Oakbay said at the time.

South Africans endured load shedding in 2008 and again in 2014 and 2015 due to insufficient coal supply and a lack of investment in new plants. The lack of electricity curbed growth, according to economists.

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