Zimbabwe has announced a four-fold increase in electricity tariff to boost revenue for more power generation and imports.

In a statement, the Zimbabwe Energy and Regulatory Authority ZERA said the sharp rise came at a time the country was grappling with severe power cuts which are affecting domestic, industrial and commercial consumers across the country.

The country had for years enjoyed a low power tariff of 9.86 United State cents per kWh, which was further eroded to a low of 1.01 cents per kWh as of August this year.

This led ZERA to approve an application by the power utility to increase the tariff to 38.61 cents per kWh in August.

On October 3rd this year, ZERA again approved another power tariff increase to 162.16 cents per kWh to enable the power utility to ramp up power generation and increase imports which are currently gobbling 19.5 million dollars per month.

ZERA said it had increased the tariff after taking into account the long hours of load shedding lasting up to 18 hours per day, the high cost of alternative energy supplies and the further deterioration of the tariff against rising inflation.