LUSAKA, (Xinhua) — Zambia has started importing 100 megawatts of power from neighboring Mozambique as part of efforts to mitigate a power deficit the southern African nation was currently facing.
Zambia is currently facing a 560 megawatts power deficit caused by reduced water levels in the reservoirs for hydro power generation. The deficit has forced the power utility to start rationing power supply to its customers. About 90 percent of Zambia’s power needs are from hydro.
Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development Christopher Yaluma said the country has started receiving 100 megawatts of power from Mozambique while discussions to increase the import were currently underway.
“Next month, government will bring in 148 megawatts and another 26 megawatts from Mozambique,” he was quoted as saying by the paper.
The Zambian minister added that discussions with other independent power producers from the region were currently underway and that by December the country will start importing 60 megawatts from South Africa.
“We have advanced in talks with various stakeholders who have extra power to supply us. Towards the end of December, we will import 60 megawatts from South Africa., but this is private power, it does not belong to the utilities,” he added.
The government, he said, has also made progress in negotiating with independent power producers on renewable energy and that the country will add about 1, 200 megawatts of solar power to the national grid by August next year.
The Zambian minister said the government was putting in place measures that will sustain power in the country in case the country experiences poor rains next year and that solar power was high on the agenda of alternative sources of energy.