Thar coal power plant to start commercial operation by June, 2019

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Thar coal power plant to start commercial operation by June, 2019

ISLAMABAD, Nov 14 (APP): The first phase of Thar Coal Fired Power Projects with the power production capacity of 660 MW will start its commercial operation by June 3, 2019 instead of October 2019 (the earlier set target for completion of the project).
Chief Executive Officer of Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC), Shamsudin Ahmed Sheikh told a group of journalists at the site of the project in district Tharparkar that the financial close of the project was achieved on April 4, 2016 and since then 10.2 per cent of the total work had been completed.
He said work on power plant and coal mining was going on simultaneously.
“This is the first coal fired power project in Thar and it is one of the leading energy project of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)”, the CEO of SECMC said adding that this was also the only energy project with such a majority sponsorship of private sector of country.
The tour of Journalists from Islamabad was arranged by Engro Corporation.
Mr Shams informed that under the second phase, two more power plants (330 MW each) would be launched in January 2016 which would be completed by December 2019 as the SECMC had committed to off-take coal for phase II (7.6 mtpa) to Thal Limited and Hubco for setting up plants at block II.
The SECMC also planed to add additional capacity of 11.4 mtpa coal beyond phase II by December 2021, he added.
Moreover he said that by December 2021 five more coal fired power plants would be set up in the block II of Thar and the total production capacity of coal based electricity of Thar would be expanded to around 3000 MW.
He informed that the coal mining project cost was US $845 million which would be on the basis of 75:25 Debt to Equity Ratio and would consist of 31.5 per cent foreign and 68.5 per cent local debt.
“The main sponsors of the project are Sindh government with 54.7 per cent share, Engro and Thal Limited with 12 per cent each and Habib Bank Limited (HBL) with 10 per cent share”, he remarked.
Shamsudin said the total cost of two 330 MW mine mouth power plants would be $1.1 bn with 75:25 debt to equity ratio and it would consist of 75 per cent foreign and 25 per cent local debt.
The main sponsors of the project, he added that were Engro with 50.1 per cent share while its other shareholders were Liberty, HBL and China Machinery Engineering Company (CMEC) and others.
He said that the Sindh Government had been a key enabler for the Thar project which committed $110 million equity investment for phase-I and provided a back up for sovereign guarantee to the federal government of $700 milion.
The SECMC CEO informed that since the financial close of phase-I in block-II, interest in setting up Thar Coal based plants had surged and major industrial houses of the country and prominent Chinese investors had expressed an interest in obtaining coal from SECMC to set up power projects.
Meanwhile briefing the journalists, Syed Abul Fazal Rizvi, Chief Operating Officer of SECMC said that the mine depth of 40 meter was achieved while they would have to go 100 more meters deep to the coal level.
He said it would be3.8 million ton per acre (mtpa), an open cast mine.