Cabinet not yet approved hike in power tariff: Khurram

Cabinet not yet approved hike in power tariff: Khurram
ISLAMABAD: July 06 - Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Federal Minister for Power addressing a press conference at Press Information Department. APP

ISLAMABAD, Jul 06 (APP):Minister for Power Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan while refuting speculations about power tariff hike on Wednesday said that the cabinet has not yet approved increase in power tariff.

Addressing a press conference here the minister said although the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) determined rebasing tariff but the matter has not yet placed before the cabinet.

The matter was discussed in the meeting of Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) and it was proposed that tariff would be increase in three parts-July, August and October. However, the government discussed the issue with it allied parties that tariff would be not be increased for lifeline consumers and massive subsidy would be given.

He said Punjab government has also announced provision of free electricity to the consumers using upto100 units.
He said water inflow in Tarbela dam witnessed significant increase during the last five days and has started its optimal production of 3,864 MW as compared to 1100 MW on July 1. The demand of electricity has also reduced owing to improvement in weather, he added.

The minister said there was an average electricity shortfall of 4000 to 5000 MW while people would witness considerable decrease in power load-shedding during the Eid days.
He said refueling of K2 nuclear power plant was underway and it would start supplying 1100 MW electricity to the national grid before the Eid which would further help reduce load shedding in the country.

Khurram said there was also positive development in import of coal from Afghanistan and an agreement was signed between private partners and Independent Power Producers (IPPs). Both Pakistani and Afghan governments were only facilitators to the agreement.
He said a Pakistani delegation would visit Kabul after Eid to finalize coal imports s modalities and they were trying to start coal supply operation from Afghanistan round-the-clock.

He said Pakistan Railways has also played an important role for supplying coal to Sahiwal Coal Power plant and three trains loaded with coal have already been arrived Sahiwal.
The minister said that the government would add another 5000 MW to the national grid system during the current fiscal year. These were all those projects which were started by past PML-N government led by Nawaz Sharif.

Replying to a question, the minister said payment for coal procurement with Afghanistan would be made in Pakistani rupees. Another Chinese HUBCO Power Plant would also be run on coal imported from Afghanistan.

To a question, he said currently Neelum Jhelum Power Plant has been shut down due to some technical fault and its cause was being determined. All out efforts would be made to remove the faults as soon as possible, he said.