KARACHI: Sindh on Thursday dismayed over delay in notification of tariffs for the proposed wind power plants in the province, terming it a move to discourage investment in the renewable energy sector.
Sindh Energy Minister Imtiaz Sheikh said the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority announced cost-plus tariff in August last year for five wind power projects, namely Norinco International Thatta Power, Iran-Pak Wind Power Pvt. Ltd., Sino Well Pvt. Ltd., Shafi Energy Pvt. Ltd. and Moro Power. Company Pvt. Ltd. located in Jhimpir, Thatta.
“However, the tariff is not yet notified in gazette of government of Pakistan,” Sheikh said in a letter to Federal Energy Minister Omar Ayub.
“A delegation comprising local and foreign investors involved in development of wind power projects approached Sindh government through energy department and stated that this move of government is reflective of strong
intent on the part of the government to discourage further investment in the sector of wind power development,” he added.
The provincial minister said the addition of these projects would help in improving share of renewable energy resources.
The government intends to have 20 percent of its electricity generation capacity as alternative energy technologies by 2025 and 30 percent by 2030.
The coastal belt of Pakistan has a wind corridor that is 60km wide and 180km long. This corridor has an exploitable wind power potential of up to 50,000 megawatts of electricity generation.
“The early commissioning of these IPPs would definitely be a sizeable step to meet these targets,” said Sheikh. “Considering the importance of developing indigenous and relatively cheap RE sources to overcome the prevailing shortage of energy, it is requested ministry of energy (power division) be directed to notify the tariff of five wind IPPs in order to encourage the investors and promote wind power industry.”
Power generation is sourced through a mix of thermal, hydel, renewables and nuclear power plants, with thermal power generation comprising the bulk, followed by hydel, renewable and nuclear. The initial policy for renewable energy projects expired in March 2018 after having successfully launched the development of alternative and renewable energy projects in the country.
It is estimated that targets under the new policy can be achieved but will require upgrade of the transmission infrastructure.
This target, together with over 30 percent hydropower will result in one of the most environmentally friendly and affordable electricity mix compared to the heavily dominated mix of imported fossil fuels in the past.