South Africa: Eskom Powers SA On to Global List of Top 10 Outrageous Predictions

opinion

South Africa's Eskom woes have vaulted the country on to Saxo Bank's tongue-in-cheek 2020 Outrageous Predictions. But the prediction that creditors could turn their back on the country as a result of the electricity utility's parlous state doesn't seem quite as far-fetched, coming out during a week when rolling blackouts take hold again and there's a surprise decline in the growth rate.

South Africa had the dubious pleasure of being the only emerging market to feature on Saxo Bank's annual list of 10 Outrageous Predictions published last week. The Danish bank predicts that the lights could go out for South Africa next year when creditors turn their back on the country as a result of "the ESKOM fiasco".

Every year Saxo Bank publishes its tongue-in-cheek predictions that, says chief economist Steen Jakobsen, are "an exercise in provoking you to think differently". Last year's theme was Enough is Enough against a global backdrop in which "the debt mountain keeps mounting and the populist movement keeps rising".

In December last year, Jakobsen was prescient in saying 2019 would be a volatile exercise. In a sign of exceptionally unpredictable times, one of the Outrageous Predictions did actually come to fruition. The US Federal...

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