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Africa|Business|Construction|Energy|Engineering|Environment|Eskom|Financial|generation|Mining|Platinum|Power|PROJECT|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Solar|Technology|Training|Transnet|transport|Power Generation|Power-generation|Operations

Right things are being done with Transnet, right things will be done with Eskom – Motsepe

Question-time response of Dr Patrice Motsepe at ARM results covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

12th March 2024

By: Martin Creamer

Creamer Media Editor


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JOHANNESBURG ( – Dr Patrice Motsepe, the founder and chairperson of diversified mining company African Rainbow Minerals (ARM), has expressed confidence in the direction being taken by South Africa’s State transport enterprise Transnet.

The executive head of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed ARM is also confident in the direction he believes that State electricity utility Eskom will take.

“I’m confident that the right things are being done with Transnet and I’m confident that the right things will be done with Eskom,” Motsepe emphasised during question time at the ARM’s latest presentation of dividend-yielding half-year financial results, covered by Mining Weekly. (Also watch attached Creamer Media video.)

“We’re pleased with Transnet’s progress, and Eskom is crucial for our business as well, and we are hoping for an Eskom that, in the not too distant future, succeeds in providing the cheapest electricity, which will be good for industry.

“But one other important point is that Eskom is crucial for South Africa’s poor people and it’s critically important that all of us work together to protect Eskom, and to make sure that Eskom is a world-class electricity company. But, in my view, the most important thing is that it serves the poor, who need electricity that is as cheap and as reliable as possible,” said Motsepe.

Regarding the emergence of independent power producers (IPPs) and their generation of mainly renewable electricity, he added:

“The issue of the IPPs is in relation to the technology that has been developing which will have an impact on the competitiveness of utilities such as Eskom.

“But the bottom line is that we all have to work together and make sure than Eskom is a competitive provider of electricity and the single most important issue for me in relation to Eskom is the poor. We should hope that Eskom should provide cheaper electricity for the benefit of the poor.

“South Africans are compassionate people and you cannot have a successful mining industry without an improvement in the living conditions of poor people.

“We’ve got to clearly understand that if electricity is expensive, it has an impact on our capacity to create jobs, it has an impact on the competitiveness of the mining industry.

“Our focus, as a country, has to be that we will only succeed if poor, unemployed South Africans also have a future. You cannot have rich people and rich companies living side-by-side with poor people who are unemployed.

“All of us only succeed when poor people and unemployed people have a future. We have a long-term duty and we are not judged by what we say but on how the unemployed, the poor, are impacted by what we do.

“Many of the mining companies are retrenching because their businesses are under stress and I’ve got no doubt that every single one of those mining companies is looking at what they have to do in the context of their long-term commitment to their employees and to the country.

“We sometimes do the most incomprehensible and inexplicable things and again, in the context of Eskom and Transnet, we have been doing the wrong things.

“We now have to do the right things and I’m confident that the right things are being done with Transnet and I’m confident that the right things will also be done with Eskom,” Motsepe emphasised.

ARM’s wide-ranging contribution to the development and upliftment of poor rural and urban communities in South Africa includes educating students from these communities.

ARM also sponsors an endowment that will be invested in perpetuity to support research in the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment at the University of the Witwatersrand.

It has also partnered with Stellenbosch University to establish a geometallurgy research chair.


ARM is committed to confronting climate change accompanied by what it calls a just and a fair transition.

On the renewable energy front, a 132 MWp off-site solar plant under construction will provide renewable energy to ARM Platinum operations in North West province.

From 2026, this project will supply ARM Platinum’s mining operations with 270 GWh of carbon-free electricity a year for 20 years.

At steady state, the renewable power purchase agreement will result in 30% renewable energy usage by ARM Platinum’s mining operations.

Apart from providing cheaper, cleaner energy into the network, this project also stimulates local economic development in areas where people have had limited employment opportunities.

The project has committed to training local employees with skills that will be in high demand amid South Africa’s estimated requirement of 6 000 MW of new clean power generation a year for the next ten years.

At the end of its 2023 financial year, ARM published its decarbonisation pathways, which included the implementation of renewable energy and the use of new energy vehicles.

An analysis shows that wheeling 100 MW of renewable energy over 20 years could result in a reduction of about 4.8-million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter



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