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South African businesses face a double financial blow this month as record fuel prices and electricity tariff increases take effect.

Customers who receive electricity directly from Eskom will see a 9.61% increase from April. The tariff hike for municipal customers comes into effect in July and is likely to be the same or slightly higher than the Eskom hike as many municipalities add a surcharge for additional costs.

Motorists already paid R1.46/litre more for petrol in March, with the risk of a similar increase in April for diesel at least, with petrol set to only increase by 30c due to the emergency intervention announced by finance minister Enoch Godongwana last week, when he temporarily reduced the fuel levy by R1.50/litre.

Yes, costs are rising, but there is a curious set of events unfolding that could, as a somewhat contrarian view, offer scope for outside opportunity for local businesses.

To talk about the continued bounce back from the pandemic for SMEs, Michael Avery is joined by Pavlo Phitidis, CEO of  Aurik Business, and Mike Schussler, economist at economists.co.za.

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