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price hike explained
September 09, 2011
Group Stakeholder Relations Manager, Mr Fullard Gwasira clarified
the new electricity tariffs In a telephone interview. He said that
the 31% increase in tariff was not an increase in the overall charge
to ZESA customers and the new tariff is structured as follows:
- The first
50 kWh had increased to 2.35c
- 51kWh to
300kWh will be charged at 11c
- Any usage
over 300kWh will be charged at 15.c
Mr Gwasira said
that with the new tariff they expected the average customer bill
to be charged at 9.34c/ kWh. Since ZESA has removed the fixed monthly
charge, this will translate to a marked reduction in charges to
the customer, as long as they remain within expected usage parameters.
ZESA has changed
its tariff scheme because the company is unable to sustain its operations.
In the period 2009 to present the commodity prices of water, diesel
and coal, all of which are required to generate power increased,
but ZESA was not been able to raise its tariffs in order to compensate.
Electricity in Zimbabwe was subsidised by the government through
the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, however, since dollarization, the
RBZ has been unable to support ZESA operations leading the power
supplier to operate at sub-economic levels. Other factors affecting
electricity tariffs include the strengthening of the Rand against
the US Dollar, as ZESA purchases power from South Africa and Mozambique,
both countries are members of the Rand monetary Union. Further there
had been no inflation adjustments to the price of electricity.
Mr Gwasira went
on to say that on the 1st January 2009 ZESA had written off customer
bills that were unpaid prior to this date.
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