South Africa’s business operators lament as outage worsens

03 June 2015, News Wires – The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry said on Wednesday the country’s business confidence slumped to a 16-year low in May.

Energy Crisis Threatens the Western Power GridsSACCI said in a statement that the drop was due to power supply shortages weighed on output in sectors such as manufacturing.

It said the Business Confidence Index slipped to its lowest level since 1999 to stand at 86.9 in May from 89.9 the previous month.

“The disruption by electricity supply shortages is having a telling impact on the output of sectors such as manufacturing and electricity.

“Although (the economy) is in dire need of foreign capital for financing struggling public sector institutions, infrastructure and complement overall local fixed investment, the business and investor climate are not convincing,” it said.

South Africa is battling its most serious power supply shortages since 2008 and state-owned power utility, Eskom, implements frequent power cuts to avoid overwhelming the grid.

South Africa produces about 40,000 Megawatts of electricity for its 53 million population.

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