JOHANNESBURG –The minerals Council South Africa yesterday warned that the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) Multi-Year Price Determination Period four (MYPD4) tariff increases granted to Eskom would place more than 90000 mining jobs on the line. 

“In total, as many as 90222 jobs would be at risk, solely as a result of the Multi-Year Price Determination Period four tariff increases granted to Eskom. This figure excludes existing sector-specific challenges,” the Minerals Council said yesterday. 

High input costs and volatile metal prices have contributed to the closure of a number of marginal gold and platinum mining shafts. 

The Minerals Council, formerly known as the Chamber of Mines, said given the mining sector’s dependency ratio of 10 people supported by each mining job, the potential socio-economic implications for the country are dire. 

Nersa granted annual tariff increases of 9.4percent in 2019/2020; 8.1percent in 2020/2021; and 5.2percent in 2021/2 in terms of the MYPD4, for the period April 1, 2019, to March 31, 2022. 

The council further said that the mining industry supported the financial wellbeing of Eskom and helped ensure the supply of electricity to the country as a whole at current costs. 

“If the mining industry’s usage declines as tariffs make certain operations and activities unprofitable, Eskom will not achieve its targeted sales volumes,” said the council.