Nyanga — ZIMBABWE'S electricity supply shortages are set to continue, with the country attaining a self-sufficient status in 10 years, a senior official from the Energy ministry said.
The remarks come at a time when the industry and households are grappling with power outages. In June, the power utility announced a nine-hour load-shedding schedule, as demand had far outstripped supply.
Partson Mbiriri, Energy and Power Development permanent secretary, told delegates to a Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) meeting last week that in the interim, Zesa would switch off geysers in Harare and Bulawayo to ease the shortages. He said this would save 45MW.
"By 2022, that's when we will be able to generate enough power for domestic and industrial power," Mbiriri said.
"Most of our woes in terms of blackouts, will end in 2015. Other countries in the Sadc region are moving ahead of us in creating additional capacities that will enable us to import power from them."
He said government was committed to addressing the electricity shortages, which would see the rehabilitation of the Kariba Hydro power station and Hwange thermal power station, expected to start next year.
Zimbabwe's daily electricity requirements average 2 000MW. As of Friday, the power utility was generating 1 142MW from the three operating power stations: Kariba, Hwange and Munyati. Hwange generated 487MW, Kariba, 615MW, while 40MW came from Munyati.
Imports from Mozambican power utility HCB stood at 150MW.
The country is reeling from recurrent power cuts, seen as a threat to the revival of the local manufacturing industry. Miners such as Unki, Zimplats and Mimosa, helped the power utility with money to settle its debt with HCB, to ensure uninterrupted supplies from the Mozambican power utility.
Early this year, HCB threatened to switch off Zimbabwe over unpaid bills that had reached US$76 million.