ZESA Holdings has raised power tariffs for exporters by nearly 8 per cent with effect from 1 August 2022.
Exporters such as mining firms will now US10.63c per KwH from US9.86c. In a letter to the chief executive of Chamber of Mines Zimbabwe Isaac Kwesu, explaining the country’s power situation, ZESA executive chairman Sydney Gata:
ZESA has been charging an average tariff of USс9.86/kWh for exporting customers other than Ferrochrome smelters, which however is below cost and hence has been failing to capacitate the Utility to ensure the security of power supply and efficient service delivery.
ZESA is no longer able to continue supplying electricity to exporting customers at USс9.86/kWh, as it is unsustainable.
The exporter’s tariff will therefore be USc10.63/kWh with effect from 1 August 2022.
Speaking in an interview with Business Weekly on Thursday, Richard Musara, a Harare-based economist, said the electricity tariff hike will badly affect the mining sector. He said:
This tariff increase, coupled with a power crunch will have an impact on the operations of many exporters including curtailing the expansion projects. Worse still, there will be no guarantee that they will get frequent supplies.
Already, Zesa has warned that import contracts with Zambia and Mozambique may be discontinued at the end of this month as the power utility is failing to pay for the supplies.
Meanwhile, Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., the South African state-owned power utility, is reportedly seeking to replace Zimbabwe as an importer of electricity from Mozambique and Zambia to help ease rolling blackouts.
More: Business Weekly