POWER utility Zesa Holdings (Zesa) is set to import electricity from Zambian company, Nusenfwa from August to address power shortages in the country.
BY TARISAI MANDIZHA
Speaking during a tour of the Kariba Hydropower Station on Friday, Zesa spokesperson, Fullard Gwasira said Nusenfwa was a private public partnership arrangement and Zimbabwe was targeting to import up to 100MW from Zambia this year.
“Zimbabwe will import an initial 56MW from Nusenfwa from Zambia as of August 1, but will add 20MW until it ramps up to 100MW, as some of the mitigation measures to ensure availability of electricity in the country,” he said.
Gwasira said presently the government was spending $6,5 million monthly on power imports from South Africa’s power utility Eskom.
Zimbabwe is importing 300MW of electricity from South Africa’s power utility Eskom and another 40MW from Mozambique. The country generates about 1 300MW against a demand of 2 200MW.
Presently the Kariba power station is generating 285MW instead of 750MW due to low water levels. Zesa also generates power at Hwange, Kariba and three smaller thermal stations in Harare, Munyati and Bulawayo
Gwasira, however, said the power imports were meant to augment electricity production in the country and some of the measures to increase power generation include the Kariba South Power Station project, which is now 40% complete, Hwange Power Station, Dema emergency diesel power plant and the solar geysers, electricity tariff increase among others.
“Kariba South Power Station is 40% complete, we are very happy with the progress and we are sure we will meet the 2018 target for completion in line with Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset).
“Plans are at an advanced stage to introduce solar geysers, so they are a wide variety of measures for both the supply and the domestic side,” he said.
Zimbabwe has various projects that could generate an additional 3 540MW by 2018.
According to reports, these Zimbabwe Power Company projects are Gairezi Hydro Power Project to produce 30MW, solar projects to produce 300MW, Mutare peaking power plant to produce 120MW, coal-bed methane gas to produce 300MW, Kariba South 7 and 8 extension to produce 300MW, Hwange 7 and 8 Expansion to produce 600MW and together with other works on existing plants which will total 1 890MW.