Breaking Down Electricity Tariff Increases: What You Need to Know

Many South Africans receive their monthly electricity bills and are left scratching their heads wondering how their bill has arrived at the amount that is owing or even, why there seems to be no change in their electrical bills regardless of loadshedding.

Oxers is here to demystify and break down some of the charges related to South African electricity tariffs so that you may better understand how your electricity is charged per kWh.

NERSA Annual Electricity Tariff Updates

NERSA is the National Energy Regulator of South Africa, an independent regulatory authority established in terms of the National Energy Regulator Act, 2004 (Act No. 40 of 2004). NERSA is not only responsible for regulating the electricity, piped gas and petroleum pipeline industries in South Africa but also determines electricity tariffs that are payable by consumers.   

On 10 March 2023, NERSA granted Eskom an increase of 18.65% on all standard electricity tariffs and an increase of 18.49% on municipal tariffs for the 2023/2024 financial year for the period 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024.

Local authority tariffs vs non-local authority tariffs annual tariff updates

If you receive a monthly bill from Eskom, you are directly supplied by Eskom, where your tariffs are categorised as non-local authority tariffs with the electricity tariff increase of 18.65% being applied from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024.

Do you receive an account from the City of Johannesburg or another municipality such as eThekwini, or Ekurhuleni? Then your tariffs are categorised as local authority tariffs with the electricity tariff increase of 18.49% being applied from 1 July 2023 to 30 June 2024.

Seasonal Electricity Tariff Increases

Over and above annual electricity tariff increases, some electricity tariff categories are subjected to seasonal electricity tariff variations between the summer and winter months. Summer electricity tariffs are applicable from September to May (both months inclusive) and winter electricity tariffs are applicable from June to August (both months inclusive).

Below we illustrate the difference between the summer electricity tariffs and the winter electricity tariffs associated with the City of Johannesburg two-part single phase seasonal residential tariff structure:

Summer Energy ChargeWinter Energy Charge
Consumption BlockRand per kWhConsumption Block Rand per kWh
0 to 500 kWh R         1,66810 to 500 kWh R           1,9900
501 to 1000 kWh R         1,9270501 to 1000 kWh R           2,2489
1001 to 2000 kWh R         2,07551001 to 2000 kWh R           2,3974
2001 to 3000 kWh R         2,19452001 to 3000 kWh R           2,4678
Above 3000 kWh R         2,3063Above 3000 kWh R           2,6283
*All tariff prices are exclusive of VAT and are based on 2022/2023 tariffs

In addition, with this tariff structure in particular, a service charge of R181.94 and a network charge of R589.35 are billed to consumers. Meaning, even before using electricity you are charged R771.29 as a fixed monthly rate which is why you may notice little to no change in your billing in between all the loadshedding.

Do you need assistance on better understanding your tariff structure and if you are being billed correctly? Contact Oxers today on or 011 678 5461 and we will help you to break down your electricity bill.