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Top management of diversified coal and minerals miner Exxaro would hold discussions with Eskom’s recently appointed acting CEO Johnny Dladla as soon as possible to discuss its proposed R8.7bn, 30% black economic empowerment (BEE) transaction, it said on Monday. Although Eskom has no power to interfere in this deal, Exxaro’s proposal in November to drop its BEE ownership to 30% from 52.1% after its original 10-year structure called Main Street 333 matured was greeted with dismay by Eskom’s acting CEO at the time, Matshela Koko. He has since been suspended. Exxaro is Eskom’s biggest coal supplier and the power utility only signs new contracts with suppliers that are more than 50% black-owned. But as Exxaro already has long-term coal supply contracts in place and is seeking to diversify its reliance on Eskom, it is not bound by Eskom’s new policy. Exxaro already holds long-term mining rights, so it also does not have to secure approval from the Department of Mineral Resources, although...

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