Research Analyst
Apr 06 - 12, 2009

Pakistan's Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) was established in 1958 as a semi-autonomous body for the purpose of coordinating and giving a unified direction to the development of schemes in water and power sectors, which were previously being dealt with by the respective electricity and irrigation department of the provinces.

Since October 2007, WAPDA has been bifurcated into two distinct entities i.e. WAPDA and Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO). WAPDA is responsible for water and hydropower development whereas PEPCO is tasked with the responsibilities of thermal power generation, transmission, distribution, and billing. WAPDA is responsible for generation, transmission, and distribution of power, irrigation, water supply, and drainage, prevention of water logging and reclamation of waterlogged and saline lands, flood management, and inland navigation.

WAPDA has one of the largest bases of human resources in Pakistan. Over the years, WAPDA has built up a reservoir of technical knowledge, which has made it a modern and progressive organization.

Coal 40 6.5
Gas 19 45
Nuclear 16 2.5
Hydro 16 33
Oil 7 16
Source: World Bank


The primary development role of the WAPDA has been revived. It is now focusing only on hydel development and water sector projects to support the national economy and poverty alleviation through provision of electricity at affordable price. It is improving hydel-thermal mix of power generation and timely executing projects to meet the water and power demand of the growing population, agriculture, and industry of the country.

(as of June -07)
Hydel 6,444 MW
GENCOs 4,675 MW
IPPs 5,772 MW (including 30 MW Hydel)
Nuclear IPP (Chashnup) 325 MW
Rental 150 MW
Total 17,366 MW


Power wing of WAPDA comprising generation, transmission, and distribution has been restructured into fourteen public limited companies. These fourteen corporate entities include four thermal power generation companies (GENCOs): Southern Generation Power Company Limited (GENCO-1) headquartered at Jamshoro district Dadu near Hyderabad Sindh; Central Power Generation Company Limited (GENCO-2) at Guddu district Jacobabad Sindh; Northern Power Generation Company Limited (GENCO-3) at TPS district Muzaffargarh Punjab; and Lakhra Power Generation Company Limited (GENCO-4) at WAPDA House Lahore. Power wing has one National Transmission & Power Dispatch Company (NTDC) and Nine Distribution Companies (DISCOs).


WAPDA controls the national water supply sector divided into north, central, and south zones in North Western Frontier Provinces (NWFP), Punjab, and Sindh respectively and surface water development projects. In addition, the Water Wing has a C.E (Coordination and Monitoring) for construction and operation of dams and all other projects under water wing services (TS), and for Ghazi Barotha Hydropower and National Drainage projects. The Planning Division of the wing looks after all planning activities on the waterfronts. The activities of water resources and hydropower development are handled under the vision of 2025.


Currently, WAPDA is working on various projects, which include construction of dams such as Gomal Zam Dam project, Mirani Dam, Mangla Dam Raising project, Sabakzai Dam, and Satpara Dam. Under construction canals include Rainee Canal, Kachhi Canal, and Greater Thal Canal. It has under construction drainage projects. Under construction hydropower projects include Allai Khwar Hydropower, Khan Khwar Hydropower, Duber Khwar Hydropower, Jinnah Hydropower, and Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project.


Water and Power Development Authority has planned to construct 32 small and medium dams in all the four provinces, in addition to implementing mega projects in water and hydropower sectors. The construction of eight small and medium dams, two in each province would be undertaken in the first phase. These include Hingol and Naulong dams in Balochistan, Nai Gaj and Khadeji dams in Sindh, Bara and Chudwan Zam dams in NWFP and Ghabir dam and Dera Ghazi Khan dam in Punjab. These small and medium dams will tap the water and power resources.


WAPDA's vision 2025 programme comprises a comprehensive integrated water resources and hydropower developments. Five mega hydropower projects have been announced, which are to be completed by 2016 with gross generation capacities of 9,500 MW. The total cost of these projects will be US$20.3 billion. Two projects are ready for awarding construction works whereas three projects are in the stage of feasibility studies and preparation of tender documents. In addition to this, there are 14 new projects under study with total generation capacities of 20,770 MW and with estimated cost of US$ 32.15 billion. The projects will be located on River Indus and its tributaries. WAPDA is fully focused on optimal utilization of water and power resources for sustainable economic growth in the country.