Zim tar­gets 5 500MW by 2030

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business Chronicle - Bianca Mlilo

ZIM­BABWE is tar­get­ing up to $14 bil­lion in­vest­ment in sev­eral en­ergy in­fra­struc­ture projects that will yield 5 500 megawatts (MW) of electricity by 2030, the Zim­babwe En­ergy Reg­u­la­tory Au­thor­ity (Zera) says.

The an­tic­i­pated power out­put would meet do­mes­tic in­dus­try and house­hold de­mand with a pos­si­bil­ity of sur­plus sales to the electricity starved re­gion.

Ad­e­quate sup­ply of electricity is in­ex­tri­ca­bly linked to economic growth and de­vel­op­ment as it en­ables the coun­try to un­lock the po­ten­tial of its pro­duc­tive sec­tors.

Zera chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer En­gi­neer Glo­ria Magombo said presently Zim­babwe has an in­stalled ca­pac­ity of 1 936MW but only pro­duces about 900MW due to age­ing in­fra­struc­ture with to­tal avail­able electricity in­clud­ing im­ports at 1 276MW.

“To reach this tar­get (5 500MW) we need $1,5 bil­lion for re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, $2,2 bil­lion for new build­ing in­fra­struc­ture, $1,5 bil­lion trans­mis­sion in­fra­struc­ture and $9 bil­lion from in­de­pen­dent power pro­duc­ers through the pri­vate sec­tor of pub­lic pri­vate part­ner­ships. The tar­geted new ca­pac­ity is to pro­duce 5 500MW by the year 2030,” said Eng Magombo.

She also said the cur­rent max­i­mum de­mand is no longer at 2 200 MW a day af­ter it de­clined to around 1 450MW.

“Im­prove­ment in electricity sup­ply,” she said, “as well as re­li­a­bil­ity, through in­vest­ment in new gen­er­a­tion plants has re­mained the cor­ner­stone of our in­ter­ven­tions in the sec­tor, with power im­ports serv­ing to pro­vide cover for lo­cal gen­er­a­tion short­falls.”

Eng Magombo said the suc­cess of in­creas­ing ca­pac­ity was de­pen­dent on ac­cess to com­pet­i­tive project fi­nanc­ing and project de­vel­op­ment fund­ing (both lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional) and a cost-re­flec­tive tar­iff.

Clear and con­sis­tent poli­cies and co­her­ent power sec­tor plan­ning would also be im­per­a­tive to the re­al­i­sa­tion of this pro­posal, she said.

Zim­babwe is electricity from im­port­ing 300MW of South Africa’s power util­ity Eskom and an­other 40MW from Mozam­bique. Plans are un­der­way for Zesa to start im­port­ing an ini­tial 56MW from Zam­bia, with fur­ther plans to add 20MW un­til it ramped up to 100MW.

This would be done to aug­ment power pro­duc­tion in the coun­try. Zim­babwe has var­i­ous projects that could gen­er­ate an ad­di­tional 3 540MW by 2018, said Eng Magombo.

Among th­ese are Gairezi 30MW Hy­dro Power Project 30MW, 300MW so­lar projects, Mutare peak­ing power plant 120MW, coalbed meth­ane gas 300MW, Kariba South 300MW, Hwange units 7 and 8 expansion 600MW and works on ex­ist­ing plants. — @Bian­caMlilo

Hwange ther­mal power sta­tion

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