Eskom Invests R7 Billion in Massive Grid Upgrades to Enhance South Africa’s Power Infrastructure

Estimated read time 3 min read

By Samkele Mchunu

In a bold move aimed at bolstering South Africa’s electricity transmission capabilities, Eskom has announced a landmark investment of R7 billion in extensive grid upgrades. This substantial financial commitment is part of Eskom’s ambitious plan to accommodate 53GW of new generation capacity over the next decade.

The project, overseen by Eskom’s managing director for transmission, Segomoco Scheppers, marks a pivotal moment in the country’s energy infrastructure development. It is expected to facilitate the addition of approximately 28GW to the national grid by the end of the 2028 financial year.

Key to this initiative is the procurement of 101 large-scale transformers, essential components for enhancing transmission efficiency and reliability across South Africa. These transformers, crucial for expanding the grid’s capacity, will be supplied by a panel of five selected transformer manufacturers, chosen through a rigorous open tender process conducted by the National Transmission Company of South Africa (NTCSA).

“The goal is to unlock the grid and ensure reliable electricity transmission nationwide,” stated Eskom, emphasizing the urgency of these upgrades to meet escalating energy demands. The first batch of 26 large-scale transformers is slated for delivery within 12 to 36 months from the placement of orders, underscoring the project’s swift implementation timeline.

Moreover, Eskom highlighted its commitment to fostering local manufacturing capabilities, despite most selected suppliers being international entities with local operations. Plans include issuing further tenders to encourage domestic production of transformers, thereby boosting the country’s industrial capacity.

The NTCSA has outlined a comprehensive framework agreement to procure transformers up to the end of the 2028 financial year, encompassing not only large-scale units but also transformers of various sizes to cater to diverse infrastructure needs.

“The procurement will play a pivotal role in our efforts to expand transmission infrastructure,” affirmed Eskom, pointing out that 34 transformers are allocated to priority programs aimed at enhancing existing substations and expediting critical transmission projects. These initiatives are expected to unlock substantial grid connection capacity, totaling 37GW by 2033 across 47 ongoing projects.

Eskom’s strategic investments underscore a proactive approach to meet future energy demands and reinforce South Africa’s position as a regional leader in electricity transmission and infrastructure development.

As the project progresses, Eskom remains committed to transparent procurement processes and collaboration with both local and international stakeholders to ensure timely and efficient delivery of these critical infrastructure upgrades.

For more information on Eskom’s grid upgrade project and ongoing developments, visit [Eskom’s official website] or contact [Eskom’s media relations department].

About Eskom: Eskom is South Africa’s state-owned electricity utility, responsible for generating approximately 95% of the country’s electricity and supplying around 45 million people with power. The company plays a crucial role in the nation’s economic development and energy security.

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