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Sindh govt launches $105m Sindh Solar Energy Project

By Our Correspondent
November 16, 2019

Karachi: The Sindh Energy department in the presence of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Friday signed an agreement with private firms to launch the World Bank sponsored $105 million Sindh Solar Energy Project (SSEP).

The signing ceremony was attended by Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Minister of Energy Imtiaz Shaikh, Minister of Information Saeed Ghani, Adviser to CM Murtaza Wahab and others.

Minister of Energy Imtiaz Shaikh while briefing the chief minister said that the Sindh Solar Energy Project was being funded by the World Bank with the assistance of $100 million while the provincial government would provide $5 million.

He said that the PD of the project has been appointed who has hired private firms to implement the project through private firms. The K-Electric, Hesco and Sepco would also support the project. There are three components of the project as follows:

A 400 MW solar park would be established for $40 million at Manjhand, 20 MW rooftop solar systems on public sector buildings in Karachi and Hyderabad for $25 million, the third component is 200,000 solar home systems for remote are areas in 10 districts of the province through solar Parks for $30 million. Through this project solar electricity would be provided to 200,000 houses in the area which are out of grid zones.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah directed Energy Minister Imtiaz Shaikh to sign an agreement with a private firm to operate and maintain a solar park through which 200,000 houses would be provided electricity.

Imtiaz Shaikh told the chief minister that in order to implement all the three components of the SSEP, contracts have been finalized under World Bank guidelines. Survey would be conducted to identify government buildings and to prepare bills of quantities to install the solar systems on rooftop.

A household survey firm will carry out survey in 10 districts with particular reference to energy consumption in both off-grid and on-grid areas of the province. The Sindh chief minister, World Bank mission and other top officials witnessed the signing ceremony of the contract.

The chief minister said that after implementation of these components of the project, Rs500 million of the government would be saved in terms of its electricity bills.

Meanwhile, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah in his follow-up meeting with Ambassador of Denmark Mr Rolf Michael Hay Perreira here at CM House agreed to sign a government-to-government agreement (Sindh govt and Demark govt) to launch renewable energy projects in Sindh.

The chief minister advised the Danish envoy to prepare a package right from generating wind energy, installing grid stations and then provide it to industrial areas at reasonable rates. “This will not only give you best returns but the industrial areas of the city would be able get cheapest energy,” he told the Danish envoy.

Shah said that the Sindh government has its own Distribution and Dispatch Company and recently had got a license for establishing a Grid Company which "we have already established".

The Danish ambassador had brought with him his Trade Commissioner Ali Mushtaq Butt and they agreed to make necessary arrangements for developing a complete solution of the energy crisis.

Briefing the meeting, Energy Minister Imtiaz Shaikh said that the province of Sindh was the only area which has vast developed wind corridor. The Danish ambassador was told that the federal government has approved 14 wind power projects and approval of 25 new projects was in the pipeline.

The chief minister said that there was a potential of generating 50,000 MW wind energy and till this date hardly 1,200 MW was being produced. He invited the Danish diplomat to avail the opportunity. The ambassador directed his trade commissioner to coordinate with concerned departments in Sindh to materialise the investment opportunity.