Pakistan- PTI government to launch unique new winter power policy across the country

Pakistan- PTI government to launch unique new winter power policy across the country

ISLAMABAD - PTI government to launch unique new winter power policy across the country.

PTI government is all set to unveil new winter power policy next month, according to which electricity will be supplied to all categories of consumers at a “flat rate" in winter months aimed at consuming maximum volume of available capacity.

This was revealed by Secretary Power Division, Irfan Ali at a hugely attended meeting of Senate Committee on Power headed by Senator Fida Muhammad. “We have started work on winter power policy which is expected to be finalised in the current month and is to be launched in November 2019, meant to provide cheap electricity to industry, commercial sector and domestic consumers," he added.

This facility will be available only to consumers of Discos which implies that consumers of K-Electric will not be able to get it.

Secretary Power Division said that electricity rates will be fixed keeping in view the revenue requirements in winter months. Usually, 7000-8000 MW electricity is available in winter months but according to Secretary Power Division, available capacity will be around 14000- 15000 MW. Three projects ie 1800 MW electricity will be generated from Hubco plus Thar, Neelum Jehlum in addition to 1100MW from K-IV.

He said presently installed capacity is 35000 MW which needs to be consumed at maximum level. The winter power policy will certainly minimize industrial slow down as consumption of gas will be lowered with cheaper electricity.

“In December 2019, cheaper electricity will be available despite massive decline in hydel generation," he continued.

Secretary Power, however, argued that circular debt is a big problem, saying that investment in energy sector cannot be envisaged till the issue of circular debt is resolved. The current volume of circular debt was Rs 1.5 trillion of which Rs 860 billion is circular debt (as per approved definition) whereas the remaining amount is parked in the books of PHPL. However, insiders claim the volume is Rs 1.6 trillion. He further stated that in the past growth in circular debt was Rs 40 billion per month which has been brought down to Rs 20 billion. He hoped that growth in circular debt would be minimized by 2020.

In reply to a question regarding revision of agreements with the IPPs, Secretary Power Division stated that GoP has sovereign guarantee agreements with the IPPs which cannot be revised.