Zimbabwe’s power utility ZESA Holdings Ltd. will no longer charge mining houses tariffs below cost of production as it is struggling to service “ballooning power import debt.”
Exporters, such as mining companies, will be charged 10.63 US cents per kWh from Aug. 1, ZESA Executive Chairman Sydney Gata said in a letter to miners. Power from diesel-run Hwange plant, which is under expansion to add 300 megawatts, is produced at 10.7 US cents/kWh, translating to 12 cents for customers, he said.
“ZESA will no longer be able to continue supplying electricity to exporting customers at USc9.86 as it is unsustainable,” he said.
The southern African country generates an average 1,200-1,300 megawatts of its own electricity and relies on imports from Zambia, South Africa and Mozambique to cover shortfalls. ZESA requires $17 million monthly for those imports, the company has said in the past.
Zimbabwe, which has the world’s third-biggest reserves of platinum-group metals, and also mines gold, diamonds and chrome, is targeting growth in the sector to $12 billion output by 2023. (NewZimbabwe)