Zimbabwe’s Solar-Purchase Plan May Save Much-Needed Dollars

(Bloomberg) — Zimbabwe’s state power company, Zesa Holdings Pvt Ltd., urged private solar-power producers to sell excess supply to the national grid, reducing the need for imports and saving much-needed foreign currency in the cash-strapped country.

Fortune Chasi

Under a so-called net-metering program, solar producers could register to transfer excess power to the utility and receive rebates on their electricity accounts., Zesa said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Net metering is beneficial to the utility and nation at large through the saving of foreign currency as there will be less power imports,” it said.

Energy Minister Fortune Chasi wasn’t immediately available to comment on the program.

Zimbabwe last year removed import duties on solar products to encourage the alternative power source amid a regional drought that has affected output from the Kariba hydro-plant, and frequent breakdowns at its coal-fired units in Hwange.

Businesses, including telecommunications, mining and retail, have switched to solar power as the country battles daily outages, sometimes for as long as 18 hours.

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