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Coal ‘raw sites’ identified

January 08, 2009

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LAHORE, Jan 7: Punjab Senior Minister Raja Riaz Ahmad says the government has identified ‘raw sites’ based on indigenous coal near Sundar Industrial Estate in Lahore and at Faisalabad, Multan and Sialkot for setting up coal-based power plants having a 50MW capacity each.

Talking to a group of investors and industrialists here on Wednesday, the minister said Punjab had 235 million ton coal reserves which could be utilised by setting up new power generation houses. The coal reserves available in Jhelum, Chakwal, Khushab and Mianwali districts were identified as sub-bituminous. Punjab coal had low ash and high sulfur and considered suitable for power generation.

He said the coal-based power plants would be set up on build, operate and transfer (BOT) basis or under public-private partnership mode. As many as seven feasibility studies of the hydro-power projects by private sector having accumulative capacity of 123MW had also been completed by the Punjab irrigation and power department as the provincial government was according high priority to water resources development and management.

He said the Punjab Power Development Board had been setup to provide one-window operation facility to promote private sector partnership in power generation.

The board was playing a key role in implementation of power projects up to 50MW capacity, assisting private investors in obtaining consents and licences from various agencies and facilitating the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) in determining and approval of tariff for new power projects.