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Nersa’s public hearings continue

050910 Electricity pylons carry power from Cape Town's Koeberg nuclear power plant July 17, 2009. South Africa will need 20 gigawatts (GW) of new power generation capacity by 2020 and would require double that amount a decade later to meet rising demand, the country's power utility said September 7, 2009. Picture taken July 17, 2009. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings (SOUTH AFRICA ENERGY BUSINESS)

050910 Electricity pylons carry power from Cape Town's Koeberg nuclear power plant July 17, 2009. South Africa will need 20 gigawatts (GW) of new power generation capacity by 2020 and would require double that amount a decade later to meet rising demand, the country's power utility said September 7, 2009. Picture taken July 17, 2009. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings (SOUTH AFRICA ENERGY BUSINESS)

Published Jan 21, 2013

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Johannesburg - The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) will hold its public hearings into Eskom's proposed electricity price increases at the Mangaung Metro Council in Bloemfontein, in the Free State, on Monday.

Eskom has applied to raise electricity prices by 16 percent per year over the next five years.

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Eskom estimates it will need R1.1-trillion for its infrastructure maintenance, staff cost and growth.

At a recent hearing in Durban, the energy regulator was warned that as many as 35 000 people in the sugar cane industry could lose their jobs if Eskom is granted a 16-percent electricity increase.

The South African Cane Growers' Association warned Nersa that the increase could result in the closure of four mills.

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The association's financial affairs director Thomas Funke said the sugar cane industry made R10-billion a year and employed 350 000 people.

Funke said an increase which was higher than inflation was not possible for the association to digest.

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa has indicated that it will hold a picket outside the hearings on Monday. - Sapa

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