ProPlastics, one of Zimbabwe’s largest pipe manufacturers, has reported that it lost 19 days of production due to power cuts in the first half of the year 2022.
The company has recently opened a new 500mm PVC pipe factory line to meet growing demand from construction.
In the past three years, Zimbabwe experienced a huge power crisis, the biggest since 2016.
Authorities attribute the crisis to ageing equipment at the country’s power generators such as Hwange Thermal Power Station and Kariba Hydro Power Station.
At the peak of the crisis, some regions in the country would go for up to 18 hours without power.
Last week, the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC), a subsidiary of power utility ZESA Holdings, rolled out an increased load shedding countrywide citing “depressed generation on the grid coupled with increased electricity demand as a result of increased economic activities.”
Zimbabwe’s power-generating capacity is 1 400 megawatts, but the projected national peak demand is 2 400 megawatts.
The southern African country imports some electricity from South Africa and Mozambique, nevertheless, imports are not enough to cover the deficit.
Some companies have been resorting to expensive diesel generators to continue operating. Some have installed power systems and are even selling the surplus to the state.