LUSAKA, Jan. 25 (Xinhua) -- Zambia's investment agency on Wednesday called for the unbundling of the country's power utility to enhance efficiency following the emergency of alternative sources of energy.
The Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) was of the view that state-run Zesco Limited should split into three components through public private partnerships to reduce the burden of the firm in running the various entities which includes generation, transmission and distribution.
Patrick Chisanga, the director-general of the investment agency said the power utility may fail to digest the volumes of power being generated by new players both in hydro and solar energy.
He further said the power utility lacked technical capacity to harness solar power on its grid hence the need to unbundle it and allow the private sector take some of its roles.
"ZDA's view is that with the current power shortages, there is need to attract investments in energy. There are investors in solar but the frustration has been that Zesco lacks technical capacity to take up solar on its grid," he said when he appeared before a Parliamentary Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labor.
The power utility, he said, had no financial capacity to take up all the power being generated, adding that unbundling it was the only source to improve efficiency.
He said public-private partnerships in the energy sector will go a long way in advancing development and cited Ghana as one country which has unbundled its power utility.
There have been debates in the country on the need for the government to unbundle the power utility in order to improve efficiency.
But the government said it will not sell its strategic parastatal firms such as the power utility but will undertake a review of all the firms in order to come up with viable plans on how they should be operating.