The first unit of the Kusile power station was connected to the national grid for the first time on Monday (26 December 2016) evening, which now puts Eskom in a position of excess capacity. Eskom spokesperson, Khulu Phasiwe says the excess capacity has enabled Eskom to increase its electrification target to over 200 000 households by end of March 2017, which exceeds the target set by the Department of Energy. Phasiwe adds that Eskom has also increased its electricity exports to neighbouring states.
“We are going to use that extra capacity to connect new people to the grid. And most importantly we are also going to sell more electricity to our neighbours in Botswana, Lesotho, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Because as you know, those countries have been affected by the recent drought and many of them are using hydro scheme for their power generation. If there’s no water they can’t have enough power generating capacity. And that capacity will be coming from our side which will increase our revenue,” says Phasiwe.
Eskom’s electricity sales to these neighbouring countries has risen by 31.6% in the six months leading to 30 September 2016.
Seithati Semenokane / Courant News