Local businesses have urged the government to waive duty for the importation of generators and solar gadgets to minimise the effects of electricity shortages in Zimbabwe.
Businesses have resorted to using other sources of energy such as solar and generators despite the high costs involved, The Sunday News reported citing Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) president Mr Denford Mutashu. He is quoted as saying:
It is still quite unbelievable by the generality of business that there is insufficient water to generate (power at Kariba) or we have used up our allocation of water to generate more electricity. However, most businesses have started investing in generators and solar-powered electricity.
We call upon Government to also waive duty for importation of generators as well as an array of solar gadgets into the country. This can also alleviate the impact of the current challenges that we are facing as businesses.
It’s a crisis on both the supply and the payments issue. As it is you may also remember that the power supplier has demanded payment of electricity exclusively in foreign currency the USD especially for commercial purposes.
This means there is more pressure on businesses. It piles more pressure on pricing, it also piles more pressure on members of the public and consumers. Ultimately prices rise because of power challenges. It affects the budgeting by the majority and generality of Zimbabweans.
Matabeleland Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) chairperson Mr McKenzie Dongo said businesses have resorted to using different and expensive sources of energy like solar and generators, and the cost is passed to consumers.
Since 2019, Zimbabwe has been experiencing acute power shortages which authorities blame on ageing power generators and inadequate foreign currency to import more electricity from neighbouring countries.