Industry bemoans power outages

By Davison Vandira

The industrial sector has implored the country’s power utility to prioritise productive sectors of the economy in the rationing of electricity to sustain the growth trajectory.

Energy provision is a key enabler for any economy and Zimbabwe is not an exception, especially at a time when industry is slowly getting back to its feet after the Covid-19 induced lockdown.

It is therefore industry’s conviction that the country should harness the existing energy policy to satisfy Zimbabwe’s power needs, with provision of electricity to productive sectors key to the attainment of economic targets as spelt out by the National Development Strategy One.

“As industry we want a situation here production is not affected by lack of energy provision as this will derail the country’s economic growth prospects. So, this is a great concern for the industry,” Africa Roundtable Executive Director Kipson Gundani said.

Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce CEO, Christopher Mugaga said: “The economy works as a unitary ecosystem which means every link is very important, hence, the power challenges currently bedevilling the economy should be resolved so that the economy can realise its full potential.”

Industry is convinced that with improved availability of electricity Zimbabwe is on course to achieve the envisaged 7.8 percent economic growth target by the end of the year.

Zimbabwe’s power utility recently announced a 12-hour load-shedding schedule, attributed to breakdowns and refurbishments at its two main power plants.

“The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company is experiencing a power shortfall due to generation constraints at Hwange Power Station, limited imports and a programme of dam wall rehabilitation at Kariba, which requires that two generators be taken out daily for 12 hours. The planned outage of the two units then restricts Kariba power station output during these hours,” ZESA said in a statement.

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