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The Treasury needs to absorb about half of Eskom’s almost R400bn debt pile to sufficiently lower the power utility’s borrowing costs and put it on a more sustainable long-term financial footing, according to Old Mutual Investment Group (OMIG).

Transferring about R200bn of Eskom’s debt to the national government’s balance sheet is likely to widen SA’s overall debt-to-GDP ratio, which is expected to reach 72.8% in the 2022/2023 fiscal year, by between 2 and 2.5 percentage points. That is according to OMIG chief economist Johann Els, who made the estimate at a media briefing on Tuesday at which he also unveiled a series of economic forecasts for 2022...

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