Sep 21 - Oct 04, 2009

An additional electricity of 3,161 MW is likely to be added in the system in coming months by the end of December this year, which is expected to bridge the gap between power supply and demand.

Sources in Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) told PAGE that this additional power production would help meet energy shortfall as country was facing power deficit of around 3,000 MW.

They said out of total planned generation in coming months, 1865 MW electricity would be generated through Independent Power Producers (IPPs) with the completion of power projects including Orient 225 MW (activation date September, 2009), Fouji Marri 202 MW (September, 2009), Nishat 200 MW (September, 2009), Muridke 225 MW (October, 2009), Sahiwal 225 MW (December, 2009), and Engro 227 WM (December, 2009) while two such projects had already been completed including Attock 165 MW and Atlas 225 MW.

Four rental power projects of 610 MW will also be completed by December. These are Summundri Road 150 MW (activation date September, 2009), Guddu 110 MW (September, 2009), Sahowala 150 MW (November, 2009), and Sattiana Road 200 MW (November, 2009).

About 686 MW electricity will be added in the system with the start of other four rental power projects of 686 MW including Karkey, Karachi 234 MW, Gulf, Gujranwala 62 MW, Reshma, Raiwind 220 MW and Ruhba, Lahore 170 MW.

According to them, the country's power generation capacity will reach at 18,000 MW by the end of December 2009. By year 2010 this generation will further increase to 21,000 MW with the addition of 3,000 MW.

According to sources, power projects of 1828 MW will start electricity generation in 2011 raising total generation capacity to 22,628 MW. Similarly, power projects of 1698 MW will also be completed in 2012 that will increase power generation by 24,326 MW while 2,771 MW power projects will be completed by 2013 making total power generation of 27,097 MW.

By year 2014 additional electricity of 2,460 MW will be added in the system and power production in the country will reach to 29,557 MW.

According to Minister for Water and Power, Raja Pervez Ashraf, the government will consider the China's proposal for upgradation and rehabilitation of existing thermal power plants to enhance generation capacity and facilitate the foreign companies.

The government is taking all steps to end power crisis within a shortest possible time and all available resources are being utilised for this purpose. The government wants to generate maximum from the oldest public sector thermal power plants. Different proposals are already under consideration for rehabilitation of power plants.

Currently, hydro generation constitutes 30 per cent of the total capacity in Pakistan with 70 per cent power being generated through exorbitantly expensive power plants that are run on imported oil.

According to Secretary Ministry of Water and Power, Shahid Rafi a joint task force comprising US and Pakistani officials on energy has been established and right now the US officials are in the process of assessing areas in which the US could help.

The US wants to rehabilitate the existing thermal power plants, which include Guddu, Jamshoro, Kotri, Muzaffargarh, and Faisalabad. If rehabilitated, these plants would add another 500-600 MW of electricity, the sources said.

According to them, the US will extend about $60 million in the first six months with regard to rehabilitation of some major thermal power plants.

According to sources, the US did not take interest in upgrading the capacity of Pakistan in hydro generation.

Finance Ministry has released rupees five billion to Pakistan Electric Power Company (Pepco) to clear the dues of Pakistan State Oil (PSO), enabling it not to default on its letter of credits (L/Cs) for oil imports.

The money was released to the Pepco for making payments to independent power producers which would clear the PSO dues, which piled up to Rs 92.486 billion. Power sector is the major defaulter of PSO on supply of furnace oil for power generation.

PSO is to receive Rs 29.2 billion from Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda); Rs 41 billion from Hubco; Rs 20.6 billion from Kapco; Rs 1.1 billion from Saba power; Rs 217 million from Koh-e-Noor power; and Rs 369 million from Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL).