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ECC approves 150MW power supply to K-Electric

Business

May 16, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The government on Wednesday approved an additional supply of 150 megawatts to K-Electric from the grid to help the country’s only vertically-integrated utility deal with the power shortfall in peak summer.

ECC took the decision during a meeting presided over by Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs Abdul Hafeez Shaikh.

The committee approved a proposal of the power division to allow additional supply of 150 megawatts through the grid to K-Electric to address power shortage in Karachi. There was an estimated power shortfall of 500MW during the summer last year.

The additional power supply is to be supplied from power plants, including wind power plants Zephyr and Tenaga and Dawood Hydro China.

The supply to KE will be for two years.

The power division recommended the ECC to approve Rs188 billion in power subsidies so far given to the industrial sector during the current fiscal year.

The ECC further approved additional subsidy amounting to Rs1.8 billion to Tribal Electric Supply Company for Ramazan to provide additional power supply to the seven tribal agencies of ex-federally administered tribal areas.

The power division informed the ECC that the government had been paying the electricity bills of the domestic consumers of former tribal agencies through subsidy of Rs1.3 billion per month.

The committee approved the proposed procurement target of wheat crop for 2018/19 to the tune of 5.15 million tons with financial limit of Rs158.5 billion.

Hashim Popalzai, secretary of the ministry of national food security and research updated the committee about the availability of wheat stock in the country.

“Wheat procurement process is being conducted smoothly by the provincial government (Punjab) and Passco (Pakistan Agricultural Storage and Services Corporation),” Popalzai

was quoted as saying in a statement.

The government fixed wheat production target at 25.572 million tons during winter 2018/19. Of that, Punjab is expected to produce 19.5 million tons, Sindh (3.8mt), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (1.36mt) and Balochistan (0.9mt).

Farmers were forced to sell wheat crop at throwaway prices last month as the government was dragging feet on procurement of the staple food that was ripened earlier this season due to dry weather and rising temperature.

The Punjab food department planned to buy as much as four million tons of wheat with bank loans of Rs130 billion under the procurement drive 2019.

The ECC also acceded to the proposal of earthquake reconstruction and rehabilitation authority by granting tax exemption to the projects being constructed under Saudi Fund for Development Grant.

The ECC waived off demurrage – Karachi Port Trust storage charges – on the consignments of rice to be distributed among the needy people by a non-profit welfare organisations working for the poor and the needy people of the country. The proposal was presented by the ministry of maritime affairs.

The committee approved technical supplementary and supplementary grants for different ministries/divisions.

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