ISLAMABAD: Loadshedding across the country is unlikely to end by year 2020, the State of Industry report released by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) revealed on Monday.
According to the report, the country will face a shortfall of 1200 megawatts in 2020, an estimate that has come in spite of repeated claims by the government of successfully countering the power shortage by the end of the decade.
The report divulged that loadshedding remained a major issue despite the government’s payment of Rs480 billion to independent power producers, generation companies and fuel suppliers to pay off circular debt.
K-Electric will face a power shortage of 1132 megawatts in 2016, the report adds.
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It further discloses that Nepra has advised against burdening consumers with a hefty Rs136bn to pay off loans.
The average duration of loadshedding remained two to 18 hours per day last year, the report said. However, it added that the average duration of power outage in Bahria Town was recorded as just one hour per day.
While claiming that the country's power sector has had to face immense challenges, the report said that Nepra had fined K-Electric and other power distributors on over-billing and that power distributors had failed to curb electricity theft and improve the billing system.
Nepra demanded in the report that industries should soon be permitted to directly sell electricity. It further said that Nepra advocated the steps being taken by the government to for the production of cheap electricity.
The report further said that Nepra had taken steps regarding K-Electric’s tariffs but the Sindh High Court (SHC) had issued a stay order against the decisions. The Council of Common Interest (CCI) had approved a reduction of 300 megawatts in the provision of electricity to K-Electric, but the company had requested the SHC to issue a stay order against CCI’s decision.
The report moreover said that courts have banned the equalisation surcharge imposed by the government on electricity bills. It further claimed that while Nepra had to face censure with regard to the matter, it had never imposed equalisation surcharges of any type.