The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority ( ZESA ) is offering a discounted power tariff of US$0.04 per kWh for mining companies during off-peak hours in a bid to increase production, according to local publication, The Sunday Mail Business.
Miners have been complaining of energy costs as they struggle to remain profitable in the face of collapsed commodity prices, with the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe lobbying for a $0.02/kWh cut to the $0.09/kWh peak-time tariff.
The fresh offer from Zesa targets large miners.
“Since December, Zesa has managed to stabilise power supplies in the national power grid to maximise production of miners,” Zesa spokesperson Fullard Gwasira was quoted as saying.
“Coupled with steady supplies of imports, those customers did not encounter inconveniences associated with loss of production time.
“[Zesa] has also intensified demand-side management and energy efficiency measures for farmers and miners to contain their tariffs.”
The chamber has talked down the offer, saying miners continued to prefer expensive dedicated power lines at $0.14/kWh because they were reliable and therefore negated the cost of disrupted supply, which provided a net cost saving.-mining journal