Research Analyst
June 28 - July 04, 2010

With a large population of over 150 million and a rapidly developing economy, Pakistan's energy needs are potentially huge. The country historically a net energy importer is confronting serious imminent energy shortages as its economy and population grow while global fossil fuel prices continue their upwards spiral. Thus, Pakistan needs to initiate a sustained, long-term transition towards greater use of renewable energy (RE) an indigenous, clean, and abundant resource whose considerable potential the country has yet to tap meaningfully.


AEDB was established as an autonomous body with the aim of promoting and facilitating the exploitation of renewable energy resources in Pakistan so as to achieve the GOP's RE deployment targets. The AEDB is tasked with implementing government policies and plans, developing projects, promoting local manufacturing, creating awareness and facilitating technology transfer, channeling international assistance, and coordinating all associated activities as the national facilitating agency for the development of renewable energy in the country. It has also been designated as a 'one-window' facility for processing RE power generation projects of all capacity sizes except hydel projects larger than 50 MW; for hydel projects below 50 MW capacity consultation with and concurrence of the provinces is mandatory.


Four Letters of Intent (LOI) for wind power projects have been issued, 3 for 50 MW and one for 2.4 MW. AEDB is currently facilitating twenty (20) projects having a capacity of 50 MW each, which are at different stages of development. One IPP has signed a contract with international turbine manufacturer for the supply of equipments for their projects. One company has installed six MW in the first phase of their 50 MW project. Feasibility studies for 50 MW wind power projects have been completed by 2 IPP's taking the total to 14 completed feasibility studies.


AEDB through a consultative process identified the barriers to bio-diesel feedstock cultivation in Pakistan, and is taking actions to remove these barriers. Experimental cultivation of bio-diesel feedstock on scientific basis has also been started. The cultivation has now risen from around two acres in 2005 to more than 650 acres in 2009. Pakistan's first ever commercial bio-diesel production facility has been set up in Karachi by the private sector. This bio-diesel refinery has a capacity of producing 18,000 tons of bio-diesel per annum.


AEDB has signed a contract with a foreign firm for carrying out a feasibility study for generating up to 10 MW of electricity from Municipal Solid Waste in Karachi. The study is currently underway and would lead to establish a 10 MW Waste-to-Energy power plant in Karachi. AEDB has initiated a project for carrying out detailed studies for biomass/waste-to-energy projects in 20 cities of Pakistan. Companies have been short listed for issuance of RFPs on basis of Expressions of Interest (EOI) submitted by them.


AEDB is also working to install 103 micro hydropower plants at Chitral and other places in Gilgit and Baltistan. The total cost of the project is $19.5 million out of which one million dollar is for Productive Use of Renewable Energy (PURE).

Eight micro/mini/small hydropower projects have been initiated under the Renewable Energy Development Sector Investment Program of Asian Development Bank (ADB). The cost of these eight projects is estimated at $139.5 million. Furthermore, government of Punjab issued LOIs to 10 private investors for establishment of small hydropower project with a cumulative capacity of 142 MW at different locations of Punjab.


More than thirty two vendors are currently importing solar water heaters and marketing them all over the country. Some local manufacturers are also playing an important role in promotion of this technology.

AEDB recently launched a Consumer Confidence Building Program for the promotion of Solar Water Heaters in the country. The program was designed to create awareness of solar water heating technology and to build the consumer confidence on the product through a number of incentives to buyers that included money back guarantee. AEDB is also working for the deployment of 20,000 solar water hearers in Gilgit Baltistan.


Projects already commissioned 586
2010 2,806
2011-12 672
2013 501
2014 612
2015 2,292
2016 888
2017 2,488
Total 10,845


The Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) acts as a 'one-window' facilitator for conventional private sector power generation projects including RE hydel projects of more than 50 MW capacity in the country.

PPIB is currently processing forty four multiple fuel (Oil, Coal, Gas and Hydel) power generation projects with a cumulative capacity of 10,845 MW which are expected to be commissioned from year 2010 to 2017.

Furthermore, the following IPP's have been established in 2009-10 and other projects are under construction and will soon be delivering much needed megawatts to the national grid to minimise the demand-supply gap.


Renewable energy options can become economically competitive with conventional supplies on a least-cost basis. This is particularly true for the more difficult, remote, and underdeveloped areas where RE can also have the greatest impact and the avoided costs of conventional energy supplies can be significant.