The Chronicle

Zvamaida Murwira, Harare Bureau

GOVERNMENT has set aside $8,4 billion for the rehabilitation and expansion of Hwange Thermal Power Station while it will support the use of alternative sources of energy through provision of several fiscal incentives for the importation of equipment.

Presenting his 2020 national budget in Harare yesterday, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube said Zesa will mobilise the local currency component with Government providing the foreign currency.

This came out after legislators grilled Independent Power Producers for failing to take off despite being licensed several years ago. “The 2020 Budget seeks to alleviate power supply constraints through the following strategies, rehabilitation and expansion of Hwange Thermal Power Station, $8.4 billion. We will support alternative sources of energy such as solar power projects through various fiscal incentives relating to importation of equipment and respective accessories,” said Prof Ncube. “20 IPP solar projects are already lined up for implementation. While Zesa will raise the local resource component through cost recovery tariff model, Government through the RBZ will assist to mobilise the requisite foreign currency from the market.”

He said there was need for improved electricity supply through imports and other alternative sources of energy. “These include harnessing of emergency power generation capacity from Independent Power Projects,” he said.

“Infrastructure investments play a key role in enhancing competitiveness including growth. Underfunded and neglected infrastructure services results in the economy performing in a highly inefficient manner.”