Government, through the Ministry of Energy has implemented a 5-year tax break for solar investors to motivate those who want to invest in the solar energy industry.
A heavy load shedding schedule, sometimes lasting 15 hours, pushed the rise of Zimbabwean renewable energy market opening limited prospects for investors.
In a Senate Question and Answer session last week, Minister for Energy, Zhemu Soda said the 5-year tax break was driven by the country’s growing demand for electricity.
“Government is stepping up incentives for solar power generation investors. On top of the duty-free importation of solar equipment, the government is now tabling a 5-year tax break for solar investors.
“Whatever they are going to generate during those five years, they are not obligated to pay tax to Government. This is done to motivate those who want to invest in the generation of solar energy so that the solar grids can be linked to the national grid,” he said.
Zimbabwe is slowly turning to mini-grids in order to power the nation. According to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), mini-grids are going to be key to bringing electricity to more than 500 million people in Africa by 2030.
Minister Soda added that the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) has been tasked to implement new projects to revive and improve older ones.
“As I am talking, there are a number of projects being done by REA to install new solar systems ones to better those that were installed from 2005 to 2015. We have 400 solar units that have deteriorated in terms of electricity generation and REA was tasked to make sure that such stations begin to generate power,” he added.
Government however, is looking to get the main power generation plants, at Hwange and Kariba, to reach more places, Minister Soda concluded.
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