HARARE, The Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) plans to set up three solar power plants to generate up to 300 megawatts (MW) of electricity, a move aimed at increasing electricity supply, the country's energy industry regulator says.

The Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA) said in a statement here Monday that the planned solar power plants, each with a capacity to generate 100 MW, would be located in Gwanda and Matobo in Matabeleland South Province and at Munyati in Midlands province.

"Notice is hereby given that the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA) has received an application from the Zimbabwe Power Company (Pvt) Limited to construct, own, operate and maintain the proposed 100 MW Insukamini Solar Photovoltaic Power Plant at Valindre Farm of Matobo district in Matabeleland South Province," the authority said.

ZERA also invited stakeholders to forward recommendations or concerns on the three projects. "Any person desiring to make representations on this application for a generation licence may within 14 days from the last day of this publication lodge a written representation with the ZERA office," it said.

The ZPC is responsible for power generation and has over the years failed to meet demand because of limited capacity as its old infrastructure fails to perform to its maximum. Zimbabwe has had to rely on imports from mainly South African and Mozambique to augment inadequate power supplies.

The ZPC is currently undertaking a multi-million expansion of the Kariba hydro-electric power station by adding a further 300 MW which is being funded by China to the tune of 400 million US dollars. At the moment, the plant has a capacity to produce

750 MW.

The Hwange power station is also set to expand in another China-financed deal.

Recently, the ZPC sought permission from the State Procurement Board to cancel a 113 million USD contract for repowering the Munyati Power Station awarded in 2015 to Indian company Jaguar Overseas Limited, citing the company's delays in securing funding for the project.