China’s plans to build a power plan in Zimbabwe – Where is the project now?

One of the leading Chinese brands in the industry, Yaowei Technology, planned to set up a $15 million solar panel plant in Zimbabwe. In the framework of the project, it was planned to produce as much as 500 solar panels a day, but, recently, it was announced that the project has not started yet, and some fear that there is no future to this project.

Initially, it was said that the project would address the ongoing electricity shortages which are mostly caused by the low water levels in Kariba Dam, and older equipment at Hwange Thermal Power Station. Simply put, the energy shortage in Zimbabwe is huge.

The population of the country suffers a lot due to the lack of electricity, and finding a way out of the situation seems to be very hard. In fact, some even believe that there is no other way but to adopt solar power plants to overcome the challenges the country is facing.

Around the world, it is largely believed that the future is solar energy. This environmentally-friendly technology is able to produce a lot of energy, and the best thing about it is that it can be used almost anywhere.

These power plants work by using the energy of direct sunlight. The climate, as well as the location of Zimbabwe, is perfect for this technology. Because of this, many were very confident with the plan, believing that this could help the country’s struggling population.

Solar energy companies around the world are growing very fast. As of today, there are many of them and people all over the world invest in these companies because of their huge future prospects. Due to the fact that the potential growth of these companies is so huge, investing in solar enegry stocks is believed to be a great idea for many. In fact, these stocks have become some of the most traded stocks in the world.

As the demand for energy around the world increases, people are looking forward to technologies that can provide people with electricity, while also being environmentally friendly.

Because of so many advantages that the solar energy industry has, many believed that the power plant in Zimbabwe would be a way out for the country. But, as there are no signs of the project finishing, it is hard to see a solution for the country’s population.

$15 million project

As it was announced back in 2019, the project would cost $15 million and it would be able to help Zimbabwe have stable electricity. As Yaowei Technology’s director said while presenting the project, the company was looking for countries with problems in the energy sector. The company was ready to invest not only in Zimbabwe but in other parts of the world to ease the power shortages with the usage of renewable energy. The company representatives said that at least one-hectare piece of land would be enough for the first phase of the project.

Not only would the plan help the energy sector of the country, but it would have been able to create job opportunities for the population of the country. On the other hand, the company representatives also talked about the importance of the local population of the country being part of the project.

Not only that, but the director of the company also said that the whole country needs to support economic policies in the country to realize the whole potential and ensure Zimbabwe is the economic hub for the Southern African Development Committee.

As for the reasons for the project to be canceled, or stopped, there is not much known about it. But, considering the events taking place around the world over the past two years, it’s not that hard to speculate on possible reasons.

The fate of the project

While no official statement was made, some experts believe that one of the main reasons for the project to be stopped was the Covid-19 pandemic. The virus, which first spread in China, had a huge impact on numerous sectors of the economy.

Of course, it also was the solar energy sector. The majority of the manufacturing companies around the world had to stop functioning, of course including Chinese companies. Because of the halt in manufacturing, many projects around the world had to be canceled.

If this truly is the reason for the project being halted, there still is a chance for it to be continued in the near future. However, some experts speculate that there could have been other reasons as well.

Some believe that the Chinese company decided to not invest in the country because there was a lack of interest from the Zimbabwe government. While this seems to be hard to believe due to the challenges faced by the local energy sector, this could actually be somewhat true.

The representatives of Yaowei Technology noted while talking about the project that there was a need for huge involvement from Zimbabwe for the project to be a success. If this is the reason, it is very hard to see the project continuing in the near future.

However, this is total speculation as there has not been any official statement made by the company. Whatever the reason might be, one thing is clear – the project does not seem to be active at the time, and the population of Zimbabwe is still struggling with numerous power outages and unstable electricity. In this situation, solar power seems to be one of the only savors.


  • comment-avatar
    spiralx 9 months ago

    I don’t see any reference in the article to your correspondent taking directly to the company, and getting withe a reply, or not. Perhaps a less speculative and more fact-based approach might be useful?

  • comment-avatar
    Dr Ace Mukadota PhD 9 months ago

    “Beware of Greeks(Chinese) bearing gifts” comrades.
    Virgil between 29 and 19 BC
    Very similar to a sugar daddy offering sweets to a street prostitute who fails to deliver the sweets after the in/out session.

  • comment-avatar
    chiremba wematombo 9 months ago

    The most important reason for non implementation of an independent power producer will revolve around viability issues of the project. Remember these companies are not charitable in their objectives, but are more worried about the project’s rate of return issues. In that regard, it is most likely that, like most other such projects, it would have collapsed at the power purchase agreement stage!