NEWS
16/01/2018 06:41 SAST | Updated 16/01/2018 07:24 SAST

Eskom Struggles To Refinance Maturing Debt: Report

Eskom is also battling to finalise its interim financial results and could be suspended from the JSE.

Siphiwe Sibeko / Reuters

Eskom is facing questions over whether or not it is still a going concern, Business Day reported on Tuesday, as it struggles to finalise its interim financial results for the last six months.

Eskom is reportedly struggling to refinance maturing debt and plans to go to the international market in January to find relief for its debt problems, but it can only do this after it has released its financial results.

Eskom is quoted as saying its results will be released at the end of January, after the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) threatened to suspend trade in the power utility's listed bonds if it did not do so.

According to MoneyWeb, the JSE on Monday said, "Eskom's listed debt securities and registration of their programme memorandum may be suspended in accordance with the provisions of the JSE's Debt Listings Requirements. Trading can still take place pending the JSE's decision on whether it will suspend or not in accordance with the Debt Listings Requirements."

Treasury deputy director-general Anthony Julies told Business Day that Eskom's problem was that it could not show that it could take over maturing debt, and so it cannot show that it is a going concern, which is a concern for auditors.

Treasury is reportedly working with Eskom to ensure is not suspended by the JSE. Eskom told Business Day that the power utility is committed to improving its liquidity levels. Securing funding had been difficult recently due to "governance concerns", a spokesman said, but Eskom was convinced that its funding plan could still be executed.

Eskom previously said it could not release its statements because of the 5.23% tariff increase granted by National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa). Eskom had asked for an increase of 19.9%.

Fin24 reported on Tuesday that Eskom now says it will wait for Nersa to give reasons for the increase before Eskom decides whether or not to challenge it in court.