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PPIB extends financial close deadlines of three power projects

By Our Correspondent
February 20, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) on Tuesday allowed one year extension in the financial close deadlines of three power plants with a combined generation capacity of 1784 megawatts (MW), The News has learnt.

A decision to this effect was taken in a PPIB meeting that was chaired

by Minister for Power Omar Ayub Khan.

A statement said the extension for in the financial close date for 1124 MW Kohala Hydropower Project was given considering it was the largest hydropower project and so far the single largest investment in any IPP in Pakistan/ Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJ&K).

The project is also a vital component of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and has achieved significant progress so far.

Addressing the meeting, the power minister stressed the government of AJ&K and PPIB to expeditiously resolve all pending issues of this project on priority basis.

The board, in order to facilitate indigenous fuel based projects, also approved an extension in the Financial Close deadline of 330 MW Siddiqsons Energy Limited and 330 MW Thar Energy Limited maintaining the Commercial Operations Date for these projects.

The statement said addition of 660 MW of affordable and reliable electricity will energise the national grid in true sense, while it will also be instrumental in further developing the Thar coal for power generation, saving of millions of dollars of foreign exchange annually.

It will also generate economic activities as well as employment opportunities for the people of the remote area of Thar, improving the basic infrastructure in the vicinity of these projects under corporate social responsibility, it added.

Khan said the present government was working on a number of

initiatives to generate indigenous, reliable and affordable electricity through different means to meet ever-growing energy needs of the country.

“Our country has plenty of indigenous and natural resources, which if utilised astutely, affordable electricity can be generated to bring sustainability in the system for many decades to come,” the minister said.

The board also considered the proposal for processing small hydropower projects that have been issued Letter of Interest (LOI) by provinces/AJ&K/Gilgit-Baltistan and referred to PPIB for subsequent handling under Tripartite Letter of Support (TLOS) regime as envisaged under Power Generation Policy 2015.

In this regard a uniform and transparent criterion was approved by the board to apply on all small HPPs of provinces/AJK across the board.

The board also advised the National transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) and Central Power Purchasing Agency (CPPA) for formulating proper planning for the purchase of power and power evacuation from indigenous and cheap hydropower resources and other renewable.

The minister further said the present government was working on economic revival of country for which electricity was the most important sector.

“The recent visit of Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman to Pakistan has the paved the way for huge investment of $20 billion in Pakistan,” Khan said.

He added that world’s renowned business groups like ARAMCO and ACWA Power of Saudi Arabia were coming to invest in Pakistan, while many other top-rated business groups were also lining up to follow the Saudi companies’ suit, which would change the fate of Pakistan in coming times.