Pangea SI Expert: When it comes to renewable energy regulations in Zimbabwe, the market has been quite growing, and the government has been responding to regulation with the growth of exponential growth of the solar PV market. This has been mostly in response to the current load-shedding challenges that have been facing the country for the past two decades or so it has been on a rolling out basis mostly started with the government and development institutions such as the UNDP and other non-governmental institutions working together so that they can promote the use of solar PV in Zimbabwe. So initially it started with the NGO’s moving pilot programmes in marginalised areas. This was a time when solar PV systems were quite expensive to the local people in early 2010. But as time went on, successive governments have introduced regulations that have encouraged the mass adoption of solar PV. For example, the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority. EV’s and lithium-ion batteries. This has been really a big push towards the adoption of solar PV by consumers in Zimbabwe. Aside from those regulations, the government has rolled out regulations that offer government guarantees for solar PV, for example. And this state utility works closely with educational institutions for the promotion of Renewable Energy.
Pangea SI Expert: When it comes to incentives, the government has been adopting sort of like only firefighting bases, and the government has been really listening to us, the investment community, because those are the ones that are mainly pioneering the adoption of solar PV, particularly independent power producers. Last year, the government introduced government guarantees for independent power producers. The main sticking points that we are being demonstrated through the government by the independent problem. It was mainly in the assembly economic challenge that was being offered by the local power utility. That is the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority. So, the government has stepped in by offering government guarantees for independent profiles, just as that initially totaling 1000 megawatts. This is a big plus towards the renewable energy sector.
Pangea SI Expert: In Zimbabwe mainly we are in a draw currency system now we are mainly using the local currency that is the Zimbabwe dollar as well as the United States dollar in everyday transactions. So, when it comes to the major issues that independent power producers just as are facing when you set up your locals let’s say for example your local solar farm, you agree towards the power pages agreement with the Zimbabwe electricity transmission and distribution company. But one of the major sticking points was when it came to payment. When the local power utility was paying for this independent property as it was mainly paying in the local currency, which has been heavily hampered by inflation in the current years. So, the government is really coming to the same that we can offer government guarantees, but this is still a starting point because the government guarantees were introduced last year in December 2022. So, the country has been going a long way when it comes to adopting those ones. So most independent producers have been having agreements with mining houses, particularly those that are in the export market towards setting up their solar farms.
Pangea SI Expert: In sub-Saharan Africa, the integration of the electricity grid has made mainly driven by power pools. And here in southern Africa, we have the Southern African Power pool. It’s a local, let’s say, local regional power pool that enables Member States to trade with each other when it comes to renewable energy. The biggest markets for renewable energy are particularly in Mozambique and Zambia. Mozambique has been really pushing through when it comes to electricity exports towards the Southern African Power Pool and currently Mozambique’s exporting power to South Africa, Zimbabwe, and a few other African countries. So, this Southern African powerful has been helpful when it comes to the integration of renewable energy solutions. So, let’s say for example, Zimbabwe right now is facing load shading it will import power from the DRC and South Africa as well as Zambia and Mozambique and it’s when the current position is depressed. So, the African Union is advocating for a single African market that is the African single electricity market that is still in the Permian stages of being implemented. This is a single electricity market, we know about the connection of power pools in southern Africa, East Africa, West Africa as well as North Africa to enable, let’s say, a country like Morocco and Kenya would be able to trade electricity. This would go a long way. When it comes to it, the integration of renewable energies.
Pangea SI Expert: When it comes to the integration of renewable energy for Africa, when it comes to utility-scale technologies, we are still catching up to the rest of the global trains when compared to North America, Europe, and China. The most sticking point has been when it comes to the intermediate behaviors of our solar PV as well as the compatibility of each individual group in May or June, aside from the Southern African Power Pool. The other national groups that are not yet compatible haven’t invested that much in the interconnectivity with other countries, so you get that stamping broke where you have different frequencies and different power qualities, this has been in such a way as I call utilities, have adopted microgrids that wake, let’s say, for example, in row Zimbabwe, you have a local medical that caters for that community that is not connected to the local group. This has been quite helpful in marginalized communities and far away communities that are less accessible towards transmission and distribution this is odd in Developing and deploying solar PV, for example in Africa.
Pangea SI Expert: Grid utilities have common standards that are advocated by Power Pool. For these individual power pools and power utilities have set standards to avoid those circumstances from occurring so that the seamless transmission of power. So, the intermediated solutions in South Africa are right now in the southern region is one of the world’s best renewable energy markets currently. They deployed battery storage systems that are used by wind and solar solutions so that power can be easily managed when it comes to distributing it over long distances as well as storage systems.
Pangea SI Expert: For the energy storage systems I have big plans for the African market because you get instances where you have a demand-side demand pool that doesn’t need electricity at that moment. But later, during peak times and difficult times, they differentiate across different regions. So, energy storage technologies will play a bigger role when it comes to the touted just energy transition that is being rolled up by numerous countries. You have some instances where, for example, in Namibia and here in Zimbabwe and green energy, green hydrogen solutions are being touted in introduced into the local power utilities so that they can remove those sitting challenges and head to forwards and challenges in intermittent energy storage.
Pangea SI Expert: Investment strategies usually depend on a country-to-country basis. When it comes to my home country, In Zimbabwe, the biggest risk has been to do with the sub-economic tariffs that are mainly affected by microeconomic situations like inflation. But when it comes to some countries in sub-Saharan Africa like South Africa, this has been really a magnet towards investment. Even the maturity of the market and the development of the local power electricity market there. So, Africa has a long way to go because my job is in the southern region, there are so many countries, and those countries have different economies would be different situations that come into play. So, most companies that I would be coming into the southern in sub-Saharan Africa you’d see that they have an investment where they would start off in South Africa while everything plays well in South Africa, they would later branch out to start their other regions and go into other countries. So, for example, in East Africa, like the Kenyan market, which has been really having a bigger appetite when it comes to Renewable energy technologies. So, it’s mostly on a case-by-case basis when it comes to investment strategies because each country has, for example, a different credit rating that makes it suitable for you as well, that is one of the major circumstances that determine investment strategies for each country in Africa.
Pangea SI Expert: The more it mostly depends on the location because in sub-Saharan Africa, when it comes to solar PV, you have a wide array of initiatives that can be taken. For example, let’s say you have your solar lighting, these have been quite popular in sub-Saharan Africa, where providers come in with solar kits that are affordable because you have that cost and affordability basis that comes into play. Solar kits are quite portable and quite affordable, and you must take into consideration that most of the population in sub-Saharan Africa is based in rural communities. So, from a cost perspective, these solar kits have been a big hit when it comes to raw communities buying them. So, you have those solar kits, then you have those solar microgrids that are installed for a local community and those are just the reduce the distribution and transmission costs and you must take those into a bigger perspective when it comes to the cost perspective. So, it mostly depends on the cost-by-cost basis. Then you come to South Africa and Kenya where most wind energy systems have been developed because of their suitability for their environments there. When it comes to their wind speed. But most it depends on a case-by-case basis for each country.
Pangea SI Expert: The risk profile will mostly depend on a country-to-country basis. You have some countries with a bad history when it comes to dealing with investors, and then you have countries, for example, South Africa where investors get a good internal rate of return on their investment. So, it mostly depends on each country case that you go with. Let’s say for example in Zimbabwe, the government has stepped in with the government guarantees for independent power producers because you had in the past an independent, power pool that went to court with the local power utility when it came to the payment modalities that they agreed to in the parties agreement, the local utility went was sent to court by the independent power producer for nonpayment of their set targets. So, at the end of the day, the power utility won because according to the local laws, here in Zimbabwe the local power utility was supposed to pay the independent power producer in the local currency, but the government later changed its tactic when it came to that, they encourage their investor-friendly environment. So that depends on each situation in each region. For example, in sub-Saharan Africa. The investment climate is quite different. For example, let’s say in Southeast Asia and let’s say in North Africa. So, it depends on a case-by-case basis and how investors deal with that respective government.
Pangea SI Expert: A government’s governance can play a leading role by listening towards what investors have to say because investors must know what their markets have to offer, and governments have to be In Sync with what investors because investors come with the technology which is how they empower their local communities. They foster technology transfer as well as governments at the end of the day load shedding is reduced, power is available to everyone and at the end of the day, everyone is in a win-win scenario that comes into play. So, look for some governments that have just for investors that are dedicated to listening to the concerns of investors so that they can invest in a good environment that can offer returns for their investment.