Accra (Ghana), Nov 2 (IANS) The Export-Import Bank of India, a premier finance institution that works towards integration of foreign trade and investment with the country’s overall economic growth, has extended an $87 million line of credit for the re-powering of an electricity station in Zimbabwe’s second largest city of Bulawayo.
Noah Gwariro, managing director of the Zimbabwe Power Company, said the contract for the re-powering of the Bulawayo power station has been awarded to Indian company Jaguar.
The completion of the project will help improve power supply to Zimbabwe’s capital Harare, around 440 km from Bulawayo.
The Exim Bank, set up under the Export-Import Bank of India Act, 1981, aims to provide financial assistance to exporters and importers, and to function as the principal financial institution for coordinating the working of institutions engaged in financing export and import of goods and services, with a view to promoting India’s international trade.
On October 27, the Exim Bank said in a statement that for the release of the funds, it has signed an agreement with Zimbabwe’s Minister of Finance and Economic Development Patrick Anthony Chinamasa in New Delhi during the recently held India Africa Summit.
The bank said that with the latest agreement, India has so far extended $115.6 million to Zimbabwe.
The first line of credit of $28.6 million was extended in June 2013 for upgrading the Deka pumping station and River Water Intake System.
Minister Chinamasa said the country’s electricity supply faced a number of challenges in the third quarter of this year, due to the receding water level at the Kariba lake, one of the world’s largest manmade lakes and reservoirs.
He said small thermal power stations failed to meet their production targets, mainly due to issues affecting the Harare power station.
To improve the power supply situation, a number of other activities are also running, including the power system stabilizer tuning at Hwange, the Kariba 300 MW extension project, topographic and geotechnical surveys for the Hwange expansion project, and tendering for the Gairezi project.
(Francis Kokutse can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)