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SA’s richest man says part sale would help Eskom and SAA

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Johannesburg – Eskom and SAA would be better run if they were partially sold to private investors, helping to solve economic challenges, said billionaire Christo Wiese, SA’s richest man.

Selling part of Eskom will increase “capacity, it would hopefully strengthen corporate governance,” Wiese, the chairperson of Steinhoff, said in an interview at his Cape Town office on Wednesday. “Another enormous albatross around our neck is South African Airways (SAA). The solution is fairly simple.”

Eskom provides about 90% of the country’s electricity. While it has stabilised its plants’ performance and managed to halt regular power cuts that stifled economic growth in 2014 and last year, tariffs have more than quadrupled since 2007 to help keep the lights on in Africa’s biggest economy. SAA is dependent on government-guaranteed loans and is awaiting a decision by the Treasury on whether it will get more state support.

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