Representatives of the Kouga Business Forum (KBF) and the Kouga & Rural Business Development Chamber (KRBDC) recently met with a high-profiled delegation from Eskom to clarify issues around the infrastructure needed to implement the proposed nuclear power station at Thyspunt
The Eskom delegation was led by Mr. Loyiso Tyabasche, Senior Manager – Nuclear New Build.
Mr. Finney Jordaan, Chairman of the KBF, welcomed the Eskom delegation to the Kouga and emphasized the view that a project, like Thyspunt, if correctly executed, can and will have a positive effect on the Kouga community, not just so far as job creation, but infrastructure enhancement and other spin offs. Jordaan added “This project will ensure better living conditions for all inhabitants of the Kouga. However, if executed without proper planning and timeous investment in infrastructure, the project will lead to chaos and disaster for generations to come.” Jordaan further emphasized that the KBF/ KRBDC will only support Thyspunt if Eskom can ensure that proper planning and funding will be allocated to infrastructure needed.
The KBF/ KRBDC delegation presented Eskom with an Audited Requirement List of the current infrastructure in the Kouga and what will be needed to maintain this infrastructure considering an expected growth about 18000 workforce needed for the Thyspunt Project. This ARL (Audited Requirement List) was done with the cooperation and input of the Kouga Municipality. It is estimated that a total of R4, 5 billion will be required. Current funds available in the Kouga Municipalities budget for building new and maintaining current infrastructure is less that R300mil over the next 3 financial years.
Additional Funds will have to come from Eskom.
Other concerns raised was that social infrastructure (schools, hospitals, police) fall under the provincial authorities and they also need to revisit their budget and plans for the next 5 years to include the sudden expansion of these additional needs in the Kouga community.
Loyiso Tyabache ensured KBF/ KRBDC that a lot of lessons were learned from the Medupi new build in Lephalale.
“Eskom is only too aware that all the stake holders and authorities must be on the same page.” Tyabache reassured. He went as far as to give the undertaking that MOU’s will be signed with local and provincial government to ensure that all the needed planning , budgeting (finances) and service delivery will be available.
Furthermore Eskom would ensure that the infrastructure will be build and ready before the construction on Thyspunt will commence. Policies will be in place to ensure local participation in the project and that local businesses will be ‘on top of the list’ of vendors.
Eskom is waiting for ROD and NNR for the final licenses needed for project commencement.
Kouga Business Forum (KBF) will, in the near future, have a number of workshops on how to become a vendor with Eskom as well as how to strategically position your business to benefit from this project.
Following a frank yet fruitful discussion Loyiso Tyabache and Finney Jordaan agreed on a quarterly meeting between Eskom / KBF / KRBDC. It was also agreed to establish a representative body, that will include all stakeholders in the Kouga, to meet with Eskom on regular basis.
Kouga Business Forum