The Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) is seeking regulatory approval to sell 80MW of electricity to large off takers for a certain period in order to raise additional funding for the expansion of Kariba South power plant.
Chinese firm, Sino Hydro, won the contract to expand the country’s second largest power station by 300 megawatts. The project will cost about $355 million, with Government supplementing 10 percent of the total cost, which is about $35 million.
A ground-breaking ceremony to mark commencement of construction is expected to be held next month.
The Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera) said the proposal by ZPC had been made in terms of section 40 of the Electricity Act.
“Notice is hereby given that Zera has received an application from ZPC to sell 80MW of power at a load factor of 50 percent to large consumers,” it said in a statement.
“The sale of the 80MW capacity will be done under a power purchase agreement between ZPC and large off takers to raise additional funds for the Kariba South Extension project.”
Zimbabwe is currently facing power shortages as national power demand at peak periods is estimated at 2 200MW against available generation of about 1 200MW with the shortfall being imported from regional power utilities.
But Government, through ZPC, has embarked on several projects to bridge the power deficit through expanding existing power stations and building new ones. For example plans are also in place to add two units at Hwange Thermal Power Station, which would have a combined generation capacity of 600 megawatts.
Zimbabwe is also working with the Zambian government to build the Batoka Gorge power station, which is expected to generate 1 600MW of electricity to be shared equally by the two countries when complete. — New Ziana.