Zimbabwe utility to cut power by 12 hours a day amid shortage

An official inspects water levels on the Kariba Dam in Zimbabwe. File photo.
An official inspects water levels on the Kariba Dam in Zimbabwe. File photo.
Image: REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo

The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Co (ZETDC) said on Sunday it has begun daily 12-hour power cuts due to limited generation at its thermal plant and repairs on the dam at Kariba Hydro Power Station.

The 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”, ZETDC said in an e-mailed statement.

The power shortfall is being managed through load-shedding to “balance the power supply available and the connected load”.

Hwange Thermal Power Station is the country’s biggest, with an installed capacity of 920 megawatts, but suffers frequent breakdowns due to ageing equipment. The plant in western Zimbabwe is undergoing an expansion to add 600MW.

The Kariba Power Station is now undergoing a $294m (about R4.17bn) project which is being financed by the African Development Bank, World Bank, Swedish government and EU.

Zimbabwe has an installed capacity of 2,100MW but generates an average of 1,200 to 1,300MW, with the shortfall being met through imports.

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