LAHORE: The National Transmission and Despatch Company has secured a Rs6.4 billion soft loan for the construction of 220/132kV sub/grid station and allied transmission lines for the evacuation of clean renewable energy from 19 wind power plants at Jhimpir wind corridor, Sindh.

The amount was secured from a consortium of three banks — Habib, National and BankIslami and will be used to add 956MW of electricity to the system from wind.

A loan signing ceremony to this purpose was held at Ministry of Energy and was attended by Power Minister Omar Ayub Khan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, Secretary Power Mr Irfan Ali and other senior officials.

“The NTDC, for the first time, has explored the option of raising a loan on its own balance sheet without GOP guarantee. In the past, it had relied on sovereign guaranteed loans from the local market,” said the company’s spokesman.

According to a press release, PC-1 cost of the Jhimpir-II project was Rs10.753bn and funding required was Rs6.40bn. It will have 19 wind plants connected with a cumulative capacity of around 956MW inducted in two phases.

“The project will have sufficient capacity to transmit more power in future. And to meet the future development in Gharo-Jhimpir wind corridor, the 220kV grid station will be upgraded to 500kV capacity in coming years,” he said.

Published in Dawn, February 27th, 2020