THE Zimbabwe Electricity Regulatory Authority (Zera) has licensed Indo-Africa Power to construct, own, operate and maintain a solar power plant in Mutorashanga.
BY BUSINESS REPORTER
In a statement on Wednesday, Zera said subject to the Electricity Act and the terms and conditions of the licence, the licensee may supply electricity to any transmission, distribution or supply licence that purchase electricity for resale and with the approval of the authority to any other consumers.
“The generation licence is hereby granted to Indo Africa Private Limited in terms of section 42 of the Electricity Act to construct, own, operate and maintain Indo Africa Mutorashanga Solar Power Plant for the purpose of generation and supply of electricity,” Zera said.
Zera has in the past licensed a number of independent power producers (IPPs) to generate electricity to help close the generation gap.
The country is struggling to provide enough electricity due to reduced power generation at power stations in Kariba, Hwange, Bulawayo, Munyati and Harare.
In 2015, the government launched a solar energy campaign, as it battles to find a solution to perennial power shortages.
Through increased use of solar energy, the government hopes to cut residential power usage by 40%.
Although Zera has licensed 23 independent power producers, only a few have implemented projects that were actually feeding into the national electricity grid to alleviate the energy shortages.
The Zimbabwe Power Company generates an average of 1 100 megawatts (MW) against a national demand that peaks to 2 200MW during winter periods.
To cover for the shortages, the power utility has been importing about 350MW from Eskom of South Africa and 50MW from Mozambique’s Hydro Cahora Bassa.