ISLAMABAD, May 29: The premises of the Planning Commission (PC) and Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) are set to get solar power.

Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani inaugurated the country’s first-ever solar power grid station built with the financial assistance of Japan.

The ‘Clean Energy by Solar Electricity Generation System’ has been completed in three years at a cost of Rs553.63 million provided as a special grant-in-aid by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) under its ‘Cool Earth Partnership’ programme.

Under the project, 178.08KW photovoltic solar systems each on the premises of Planning Commission and Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) have been set up as joint venture of JICA and PEC.

Combining the generation capacity of both the photovoltic system, a total of 356.16KW of electricity would be generated. The project has two milestones; it has commenced solar power generation at a time when the country is facing acute energy shortages; and the government is searching for any possible venture to bridge the demand-supply gap.

This is the first solar photo-voltic project which has the arrangement of net-metering thereby allowing the beneficiaries to sell the surplus electricity to the Islamabad Electric Supply Company (Iesco).

Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani lauded the PEC efforts and partner organisations for the completion of the project.

He described the project as shining example of Pakistan-Japan friendship.  The two countries are celebrating the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Mr. Gilani announced a five-tier service structure and time-scale promotions for the engineers throughout the country, and directed all the concerned to ensure implementation of the laid down policy of appointment of engineers against technical posts.

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