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Zimbabwe’s power cuts, which can last up to 18 hours a day, have deeply impacted the industry, including the manufacturing and mining sectors, forcing some companies to run at night or cut back on shifts.

Qetello Zeka, Total Zimbabwe’s managing director, says that the company has already installed solar panels at six of its stations and plans to equip another 44, as the company is investing $4m in solar-powered service stations. “Our plan is to solarise half of our stations in Zimbabwe over five years. We are committed to providing cleaner, better, reliable and tangible energy solutions.

The frequent power cuts have increased service stations dependent on generator power usage, therefore increasing the operating costs. The solar initiative is part of a larger project to install solar-powered service stations across 57 African countries in an effort to create a portfolio of low-carbon businesses that will account for at least 20% of the energy conglomerate’s trading by 2040.

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