"Going South?" (Features, March 14-20) introduces important facts about SA’s aluminium industry. As the 2013 court case involving Media24 and Eskom showed, it was in the interests of Hillside and Eskom to keep the details of their deal — a loss-incurring one for Eskom — unknown to the public. Now, Eskom is short of generation capacity. The cost to the economy of load-shedding is astronomical. And the power utility is unable to say how long this shortfall will continue. At such a critical time, it seems grossly negligent to even consider selling substantial electricity to Hillside to refine a commodity that is imported. There would be no disadvantage to the downstream aluminium industry if Hillside were not in operation — particularly if one takes into account that the similar-sized Mozal smelter is "just down the road". Hulamin and the Aluminium Federation of SA claim 29,000 jobs in the downstream industry are at risk if the smelter shuts down. But one has to ask Hulamin for its def...

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