South Africa’s Eskom Extends Blackouts Due to Supply Constraints

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South Africa’s state owned electricity utility said it will cut power on Monday as it extends rolling blackouts that threaten to deepen economic contraction.

Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. will cut 2,000 megawatts from the grid on Monday as it battles to stabilize generation capacity affected by plant breakdowns. Power cuts are likely to continue during the week as demand rises. The utility, which started rationing electricity on Friday, hasn’t made sufficient progress to get additional power generation units back online, it said in a statement.

“During the coming week Eskom will continue to experience supply constraints,” according to the statement. “Due to the much colder weather, demand for electricity has also risen significantly.”

Electricity outages cloud the outlook for Africa’s most industrialized economy, which is forecast to contract 7.2% this year. Eskom, which hasn’t had a stable generation system for more than a decade, is saddled with a debt pile of 450 billion rand ($27 billion).

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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