Industrial sector exempt from electricity loadshedding till December end

Updated 14 Nov 2014

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The decision will be be effective until the canal closure at the end of December when hydel power generation comes down to very low levels.—Reuters/File
The decision will be be effective until the canal closure at the end of December when hydel power generation comes down to very low levels.—Reuters/File

ISLAMABAD: On the directives of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the Ministry of Water and Power on Thursday ordered all electricity distribution companies to exempt the industrial sector from loadshedding until the end of next month.

The ministry has directed DISCOS to immediately implement the decision, which would be effective until the canal closure at the end of December when hydel power generation comes down to very low levels, according to a press release from the power ministry.

The decision on Thursday came as Sharif, speaking at the Pakistan-Britain Energy Dialogue and Investment Conference in London, vowed to develop a competitive energy market in Pakistan and transform the role of the government from manager to regulator for the energy sector.

Pakistan faces an acute power shortage and electricity crisis. The industrial sector also faces long power cuts, especially in the winter season due to shortage of gas and spike in consumption.

Also read: ‘My vision is to develop a competitive energy market in Pakistan’

The power ministry has also directed distribution companies to implement a load management plan for domestic consumers during the winter season which would keep loadshedding at a minimum level.

“The DISCOs will implement the load management plan according to their own worked-out schedule,” said the press release.

The power ministry said the decision was taken in light of increased industrial activity which it attributed to the recent grant of GSP Plus status to Pakistan by the European Union (EU).

“Industrial activity has increased manifold as compared to the previous years,” it said, hoping the decision of uninterrupted power supply would positively impact economic development and create job opportunities due to enhanced industrial activity.