60MW solar plant for Umguza

The Chronicle

Natasha Chamba, Business Reporter
A BULAWAYO-based renewable energy firm, Glancier Investments (Private) Limited, has unveiled plans to set up a 60-megawatt solar plant in Umguza District in Matabeleland North province in a project that is set to cost millions of dollars.

The wholly Zimbabwean-owned company is focused on investment and trading on renewable energy, which includes solar, biogas, wind energy technologies and hydro electricity.

In a letter signed by Ministry of Energy and Power Development permanent secretary, Dr Gloria Magombo, whose copy was shown to Business Chronicle, Government has acknowledged the proposal to develop the 60MW project, which is in line with the ministry’s thrust towards environmentally friendly power and energy development.

“The ministry acknowledges receipt of and read through your proposal to establish the above project in Umguza District, Matabeleland North province. Your project is in line with the ministry’s mandate of providing energy to all citizens of Zimbabwe using sustainable and clean energy sources and is therefore welcomed by Government. This letter of support is, thus, being granted to Glancier Investments (Pvt) Ltd and its partners,” reads part of the letter.

Accordingly, Government has indicated that its support will be granted on condition that Glancier completes and submits a feasibility study report for the project, engages the lands department to carry out the necessary land processes as well as the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) for a grid impact assessment and power purchase agreement.

Other terms cited in the letter include that Glancier Investments engage the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera) for a power generation licence and engage the Zimbabwe Investment Authority (ZIA) for investment guidelines and policies.

“You are also to ensure that all activities of the project to be established shall duly comply with the laws of Zimbabwe, and generally help to promote its social, economic and indigenous empowerment,” reads part of the statement.

In an interview Glancier Investments managing technician, Mr Patrick Dasi said the project would impact positively on the people of Matabeleland North province and it was estimated to cost millions of dollars.

“The project will alleviate power shortages, we are going to generate 60MW that will be fed into the national grid,” he said.

“We are looking forward to doing more projects both irrigation and domestic systems. We are looking at doing our part in solving the electricity shortages in Zimbabwe, this is breaking the ice.

“We have foreign and local investors ready to take up the challenge. The project will face lift the Matabeleland North province and is estimated to cost nearly US$1 billion.”

As a strategy to boost power output, Government has recently engaged several independent power producers (IPPs) including local companies and industries to invest in electricity generation to support the economic revival agenda.

Glancier Investments was founded by Mr Milton Wurayayi, an electrical engineer and a former National University of Science and Technology (Nust) student who is also the company’s executive director.

— @queentauruszw