Energy generation, distribution to be reformed: PM Imran

Published September 7, 2021
Prime Minister Imran Khan presides over the 48th meeting of the Council of Common Interests in Islamabad. — Photo courtesy PID website
Prime Minister Imran Khan presides over the 48th meeting of the Council of Common Interests in Islamabad. — Photo courtesy PID website

• Power Division told to protect paying consumers from loadshedding
• CCI decides to include hydel electricity in renewable energy targets

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said the government aimed to reform energy generation, transmission and distribution into an efficient system.

Presiding over the 48th meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI), PM Khan directed the Power Division to employ technology-based solutions at the distribution companies’ level to save the paying consumers from the inconvenience of load management in low recovery grids.

The meeting was attended by federal ministers Hammad Azhar, Dr Fehmida Mirza, Asad Umar, Shaukat Tarin, Dr Farogh Naseem and Fawad Chaudhry, chief ministers of Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa — Sardar Usman Buzdar, Syed Murad Ali Shah and Mehmood Khan — Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Tabish Gohar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Finance Minister Taimoor Saleem Jhagra, Sindh’s Minister for Energy Imtiaz Ahmed Sheikh, Balochistan’s Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination Umar Khan Jamali, Nepra Chairman Tauseef H. Farooqi and federal and provincial secretaries.

The Power Division gave a detailed presentation on the preparation of ‘Indicative Generation Capacity Expansion Plan (IGCEP) 2021’.

IGCEP is a plan prepared by the National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) on an annual basis that provides indicative electricity demand and supply for the next 10 years based on overall requirements and with least cost.

The CCI was informed that the Power Division held several consultative sessions with all provinces as well as Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

The prime minister said the main objective of IGCEP was to determine a plan of action based on meeting energy needs and providing cheap energy to people.

The CCI had unanimously approved IGCEP assumptions as recommended by the federal cabinet at its meeting held on Aug 31 and decided to include hydel electricity in the renewable energy targets.

Besides, the CCI directed the Power Division to finalise the “wheeling” policy so that it could be rolled out immediately.

Italian FM calls on Imran

Italy’s Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio met Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday.

Both leaders discussed the latest developments in Afghanistan as well as bilateral ties between their two countries.

Prime Minister Khan said Pakistan had suffered enormously due to the protracted conflict and instability in Afghanistan, adding that therefore a peaceful, secure and stable Afghanistan was in the best interest of Pakistan as well as regional countries.

He noted that, at this critical juncture, it was vital to stabilise the security situation in Afghanistan, take steps to consolidate peace and preclude any mass exodus of refugees.

In this context, preventing humanitarian crisis and stabilising the economy were the most urgent priorities.

PM Khan stressed that the international community must stand in solidarity with the Afghan people, undertake positive engagement and create incentives for ensuring sustainable peace, stability and economic development in Afghanistan.

In the bilateral context, the prime minister said Italy was a vital partner for Pakistan and stressed the importance of enhanced collaboration between the two countries in diverse areas, including trade and investments, defence, and people-to-people contacts.

Mr Khan said the large Pakistani diaspora in Italy constituted a strong bridge between the two countries.

Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio thanked Pakistan for facilitating its evacuation operations and underscored Italy’s commitment towards enhancing bilateral cooperation in diverse fields.

Mr Maio extended an invitation to the prime minister to visit Italy while PM Khan invited Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi to visit Pakistan.

Published in Dawn, September 7th, 2021

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