Business News 6.9.2016 09:59 am

Eskom recoups R40m in Soweto after converting to prepaid meters

FILE PICTURE: File photo. New electricity metering equipment is seen following a press conference by City Power. Picture: Michel Bega

FILE PICTURE: File photo. New electricity metering equipment is seen following a press conference by City Power. Picture: Michel Bega

Soweto owes Eskom an estimated R4 billion in debt, while illegal connections cost Eskom about R2 billion a year in lost revenue.

Eskom on Tuesday said it had recouped nearly R40 million in Soweto after the conversion of homes and businesses to prepaid electricity meters, this up to the period ending in June.

Eskom has installed more than 41 628 split meters and converted 24 746 to prepaid in Soweto, with plans to accelerate the rollout of prepaid meters still under way.

“Eskom has already seen a R39 million improvement of revenue collection in Soweto over a year-long period after it installed and converted customers to split prepaid meters,” the power utility said in a statement.

“The figure is cumulative from the 2014/15 financial year up to June 30.”

Eskom said Soweto had about 181 000 customers, 65% of whom were customers who were on a conventionally billed metering system and the remainder on conventional prepaid metering system.

The power utility said the conversions of the meters had also resulted in a gradual increase in sales.

Currently, Eskom is installing prepaid meters in Sandton, Midrand, Soweto, Kagiso and other areas around Gauteng in a bid to enable revenue collection and address Eskom’s debt collection challenges.

Soweto owes Eskom an estimated R4 billion in debt, while illegal connections cost Eskom about R2 billion a year in lost revenue.

Eskom said there were other added benefits of converting to prepaid including savings on meter reading and reduced errors resulting from the need to bill the customer, as well as better consumption control by the customer, which gives certainty around monthly costs for the customer.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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