Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) is on course to complete the Hwange Expansion Project by January 2022, with progress currently at 23,2 percent. This is contained in the company’s Third Quarter update released yesterday. “Despite the challenges being faced, the ZPC has been embarking on several efforts to increase power generation and we are currently working on Hwange Expansion Project, which shall provide the nation with an additional 600MW come January 2022,” said the firm. “The billion dollar project reached its first anniversary this quarter on August 1. Progress has been satisfactory and on schedule at 23,2 percent by the end of the third quarter.”
ZPC said some of the works being carried out include design reviews, construction of employee’s accommodation, Units 7 and 8 construction, project site clearance works by ZPC and preliminary transmission works. “ZPC is also focusing on the existing coal plants as a way to augment power generation and the re-powering of Bulawayo Power Station is going to be the first to be executed,” it said.
“The pre-qualification process for the EPC contractor was concluded during the quarter with two bidders being pre-qualified for the project. Preparation of tender documents for the project is currently in progress. “The company is also in the process of working on the 120MW Mutare Peaking/Emergency Plant, which was awarded by ZERA in July 2019. Contract negotiations for Feasibility Study Consultant and PPA initialising were done during the quarter and now we are awaiting contract signing and funding is now available for the first phase of the project.”
The firm acknowledged that the prevailing situation in the country had affected power generation.
“Our stations sent out a total of 1 505, 44GWh of energy, thereby missing the quarterly target which was set at 2,355,61 GWh by 39,09 percent,” it said. “This output is 67,48 percent below the output for the same period in 2018. For the year to date, ZPC has managed to send out 6219,28 GWh and this represents a negative variance of 9,08 percent.”
ZPC attributed the lower power generation levels to breakdowns experienced at Hwange Unit 6 and low water levels at Kariba.