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News Headlines for the month of
AUGUST 2015

Operating Zamzama gas field: Tri Resources Investments executes SPA with Australian E&P Company

Tri Resources Investments Inc (a Subsidiary of Hashoo Group) has executed Sales Purchase Agreement (SPA) with Australian Exploration and Production (E&P) company BHP operator of Zamzama gas field for acquisition of entire Pakistani shares. This was stated by Kamran Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Ocean Petroleum Limited (OPL), another subsidiary of Hashoo Group, while talking to a select group of journalists, here on Thursday. "OPL is all poised to take immediate steps to arrest fast declining gas production from the Zamzama Gas field, as soon as NOC by the Ministry of Petroleum is issued," Kamran said. He added that Zamzama Block in Sindh province had potential recoverable gas reservoirs of 300 Billion Cubic Feet (BCF) and recovery of these reservoirs will save billions of dollars for national kitty over the years. "We are committed to further accelerate investment in our oil/gas sector and as a part of our aggressive and ambitious investment plans, Tri Resources Investments Inc recently executed a SPA for acquisition of entire shareholding of BHP. The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has already issued NOC and now we are waiting for the final NOC from the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources, which is expected soon," he maintained. On the occasion he announced that OPL had increased natural gas/crude oil production from Ratana and Dhurnal oil/gas fields by 20 Million Cubic Feet per Day (MMCFD) of gas and 500 barrels per day (BPD) of oil. The Hashoo Group contribution to national gas production stands at 51 MMCFD and crude oil production 5600 BPD. He said that the company in collaboration with Joint Venture (JV) partners had increased production from Ratana field by 13 mmcfd of gas and 850 bpd of condensate, adding that within next few months total gas production from the well will be increased by 20 mmcfd as the company was working to drill more wells. He added that condensate production will reach to 1500 bpd by December. The increased gas production from Ratana field will significantly improve the gas pressure in the Potohar region, which in winter faces serious nature of low gas pressure as gas is being transported from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Balochsitan and Sindh to Rawalpindi region. "Besides, JV partners have embarked upon state of the art three dimensional seismic acquisition of the whole field which carries great upside potential and is likely to add substantial oil and gas reserves," he added. "OPL, Hashoo Group's flagship company, since the start of operations in 1995 has invested a total $700 millions in oil/gas exploration and production. "In the past two years we have invested $200 million and are in talks with state run Oil and Gas Development Company (OGDCL) for partnership, OGDCL has offered OPL to become partner on 14 blocks acquired under petroleum policy 2012-13. We are also in talks with Pakistan Petroleum Limited for collaboration in oil/gas exploration and production activities," Kamran said. "We are working on rehabilitation of old and depleted oil/gas fields with the aim to conserve and produce each molecule of hydrocarbon and supply the same to the national network with one objective to reduce the energy crisis. We are committed to further accelerate investment in oil/gas sectors of our country and as a part of our aggressive and ambitious investment plans, Tri Resources Investments Inc recently executed Sales Purchase Agreement (SPA) for acquisition of entire shareholding of BHP, an Australian company, for which Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has already issued NOC and final NOC from the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources is expected soon," he maintained. Likewise, OPL in the month of July 2015 has rejuvenated Dhurnal oil field through work over in one of the oldest well which resulted in additional oil production of about 500 BOPD and 1.5 MMSCFD of gas. This unprecedented success has restored the confidence of scientists to try new technologies in other Dhurnal wells which are likely to produce a total of over 1500 barrels of oil and about 5 MMSCFD after similar workovers in other wells by turn of calendar. Kamran said that OPL acquired Dhurnal, Ratana and Bhangali fields from Occidental of USA about 20 years ago when these fields were planned to be abandoned within next two years. However, credit goes to the prudence and competence of OPL as Operator who through different workovers, drilling of new wells and deployment of latest oilfield technologies have not only kept these fields producing but has also caused discovery and production of over 8 million oil and corresponding volumes of associated gas from Dhurnal, Ratana and Bhangali fields.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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North-South gas pipeline: Russian government approves draft agreement with Pakistan

The Russian government has approved a draft agreement with the Government of Pakistan on co-operation in the construction of the North-South gas pipeline, a statement on the Russian Cabinet website said. RT Global Resources, a subsidiary of Russia''s State Technologies Corporation Rostec and Pakistani Inter State Gas System (ISGS) announced a project to build Pakistan''s oil and gas infrastructure in December 2014. The project includes the construction of liquefied natural gas terminals as well as the North-South gas pipeline in Pakistan. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced in July that his country had fulfilled the necessary formalities for laying the pipeline and was waiting for Russia to sign a relevant agreement. This agreement provides favourable conditions for the construction of the North-South gas pipeline, with Russian participation, in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, from the city of Karachi to the city of Lahore. The government approved the proposal submitted by the Russian Energy ministry. The proposal said the agreement provides favourable conditions for the construction of the North-South gas pipeline in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan from the city of Karachi to the city of Lahore. The implementation of the agreement will be overseen and co-ordinated by the Russian Ministry of Energy and the Pakistani Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources.

Copyright Independent News Pakistan, 2015

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TAPI pipeline: Turkmen state company to lead consortium

Officials in energy-rich Turkmenistan announced Thursday that state company Turkmengaz will lead the consortium for a 1800-kilometre-long pipeline carrying gas from the former Soviet state to energy-hungry India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The decision, which was reached unanimously at a meeting of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) steering committee in Ashgabat by ministers from the four countries was relayed by the country''s state news agency. "The state concern ''Turkmengaz'' in its capacity as leader of the consortium for the Pipeline Company ''TAPI Limited'' will oversee co-ordination in the construction, financing, ownership and operation of the TAPI pipeline," the agency said Thursday. A Turkmengaz official speaking to AFP on condition of anonymity said the decision did not mean foreign companies could not participate in a project with costs estimated at around $10 billion (9.2 billion euros). "Turkmengaz will lead and co-ordinate the work of the consortium into which foreign companies will also enter. Their proposals are currently being studied," explained the official, without disclosing which companies had made proposals for the project. Previously Western energy majors such as Chevron, ExxonMobil and Total had been reported as potential leaders of the TAPI consortium. A Pakistani source with knowledge of the project told AFP that Turkmenistan had decided to take a firmer lead in the project after talks with Total took a downturn. The source said Ashgabat was looking to speed up the project over fears that Iranian gas might flood back onto the market after the signing of a deal between world powers and Tehran over the country''s nuclear programme. Turkmenistan, which has little of its own gas infrastructure, has traditionally refused to give foreign investors ownership stakes in its onshore gas fields, complicating potential projects. The country is also currently in talks with the European Union, Azerbaijan, Turkey and Georgia over the Trans-Caspian pipeline, a $5 billion plus link that would funnel gas along the floor of the Caspian Sea and could provide Europe with a key opportunity to diversify away from Russia-sourced gas. The TAPI pipeline seeks to connect growing energy markets in South Asia with the mostly untapped potential of Turkmenistan, a country with the fourth largest reserves of natural gas in the world. TAPI is expected to ship up to 33 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas annually from Turkmenistan, most of which will be absorbed by India and Pakistan with Afghanistan importing smaller amounts. The project is key for isolated Turkmenistan, whose economy is almost entirely hydrocarbon-based and heavily dependent on China, which accounts for over 75 percent of its gas sales.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2015

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Use of CNG: Pakistan to collaborate with Indonesia

Pakistan is to collaborate with Indonesia on use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) as fuel and through the recently-completed Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra), well-informed sources told Business Recorder. Pakistan has offered its expertise in CNG field to another country at a time when CNG stations established in Punjab, the largest populated province, are dry and thousands of workers are unemployed. According to official documents, presented to federal cabinet, in its recent meeting, Pakistan''s ambassador to Indonesia has revealed that the Government of Indonesia is exploring possibility of using Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) as a fuel for transport. The President of Indonesia during his visit to Pakistan realised that Pakistan could serve as a model to popularise the consumption of CNG in Indonesia. This was followed by a visit of an 18-member delegation by Indonesian Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA), which visited the offices of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources, Ogra and All Pakistan CNG Association. In response to the visit of Indonesian delegation, a six-member All Pakistan CNG Association also paid a visit to Indonesia from 25 August to 2 September, 2013. Ogra has formulated Terms of Reference (ToR) to ensure its co-operation/ assistance in the establishment/ development of CNG licencing and regulatory framework to Indonesia. Ogra has also proposed a list of representatives from Pakistan to be included in the working group to be established between Pakistan and Indonesia. In terms of proviso under rule 16(1)(h) of the Rules of Business 1973, "all proposals entering into any cultural or other agreements with any foreign government, shall, in the first instance, be submitted to the cabinet for approval in principle and actual negotiations shall be initiated only after the proposal has been approved by the Cabinet". In this case approval in principle of the cabinet was not obtained before initiating negotiations. Thus in order to formalize actual negotiations which are already under way an approval has been granted. According to Pakistan''s ambassador to Indonesia, Indonesians are amazed how fast Pakistan could become the country with the largest number of CNG stations (3, 000) in the world. As a follow-up of the internal government discussions, Commissioner of Gas Infrastructure, Indonesia, Dr Qoyum Tjandranegara, met the Pakistani ambassador and shared the following: (i) at present, the government plans to set up 55 CNG stations in collaboration with private sector. The number would subsequently be increased to 500; and (ii) the government would provide a subsidy to promote the use of CNG as fuel but would not get involved in establishing/operating CNG stations. Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources has supported the proposal with the condition that all the commercial matters involving purchase of CNG equipment/technology transfer from Pakistan may be dealt with in accordance with approved government policies/ rules/ procedures.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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North-South Gas Pipeline: Ministry allowed to start talks with Russia, Qatar, China

Federal Cabinet has reportedly allowed Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources to start negotiations with Russia, Qatar and China for construction of North-South Gas Pipeline Project through a Government to Government (G to G) arrangement. The project will transport 1.2 BCFD gas from Karachi to Lahore, sources close to Secretary Petroleum told Business Recorder. Giving details, sources said that Ministry of Petroleum in line with government''s vision is working to address the gas supply-demand gap in the country. Present gas supplies in the country are about 4,000 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD) while constrained demand is over 6,000 MMCFD. Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources is pursuing a three-pronged strategy to bridge this widening gap through incentivizing the exploration and production activities for enhanced domestic production, import of gas through transnational pipelines as well as LNG in public as well as private sectors and rationalising of economic use of gas in various sectors through administrative (load management) and fiscal (gradual price rationalisation) measures. In order to meet supply-demand gap, Ministry of Petroleum is pursuing certain transnational gas pipeline projects (Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project and Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India Gas Pipeline Project) while the LNG Terminals at Port Qasim and Gwadar Port have also been planned to handle the imported Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) with a capacity to re-gasify approximately 2 Billion Cubic Feet Daily (BCFD) equivalent of natural gas. According to Petroleum Ministry, availability of gas will enable Pakistan to meet its ever-growing energy needs and give us an option to diversify gas supply resources through international energy market. The ECC of the Cabinet has already approved Fast Track LNG Import Terminal which is being constructed as per an agreed timeframe and is expected to be commissioned in the 1st quarter of 2015. The sources said the existing gas infrastructure was not designed to transport large quantities of gas from Southern to Northern regions of the country as it lacks capacity to handle additional volume of gas supplies. This project is critical for supply of RLNG to the proposed gas-fired power plants in northern Pakistan. The sources further stated that a fast-track implementation of pipeline infrastructure projects is therefore an essential requirement to transport the additional volumes of gas well before the completion of LNG terminals at Gwadar and transnational gas pipeline projects. Both gas utility companies of Pakistan are engaged in augmentation of their gas pipeline infrastructure for receiving the additional volumes of gas into their system. Keeping in view the anticipated gas supplies, consideration is being given to undertake the laying of North-South Gas Pipeline, about 1100KM-long, from Karachi to Lahore. The pipeline will not only enable us to efficiently transport imported RLNG but also give transport capabilities for the Iran-Pakistan and TAPI Gas Pipeline Projects which are expected to come online in the next 3 to 5 years. The proposed North-South Gas Pipeline Project will be undertaken through a Government to Government arrangement. North-South Gas Pipeline Project has therefore been planned, which shall be capable of transporting 1.2 BCFD of gas from Karachi to Mid Country. As per the agreed Protocol (Joint Statement) of the 3rd Session of Russia-Pakistan Inter-Governmental Commission held in Moscow from 26th-28th November, 2014, the RT-Global Resources, a 100% subsidiary of Russia state corporation "Rostec", and Pakistani ISGSL expressed an interest in jointly developing the Project namely North-South Gas Pipeline Project under a G to G basis and construction of the floating LNG terminal in Port Qasim, Karachi. At the same time, RT-GR will organise funding for the projects subject to guarantees of Government of Pakistan, assistance in obtaining of which is expected to be provided by ISGCL. According to the protocol, ISGCL, as a designed Pakistani entity, also expressed its interest in executing these projects jointly with the RT-GR within the framework of relevant inter-governmental arrangements. The sources said ECC of the Cabinet in its meeting on January 10, 2015 endorsed the following recommendations for consideration and approval of the Cabinet: (i) in principle approval of the North-South Gas Pipeline Project under G to G arrangements; and (ii) Inter-State Gas Systems Limited to be designated as the executing agency to implement the Project under a G to G arrangement in liaison with Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL). Subsequently, Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCE) in its meeting on March 13, 2015, approved that negotiations should be initiated on a Government to Government arrangements with Russia, Qatar and China to get best deal. And the Cabinet gave the go-ahead signal to the Petroleum Ministry in its meeting held last week.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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India buys Pakistan oil

India''s oil imports in July rose nearly 12 percent from a year earlier to about 4.12 million barrels per day (bpd), with the country shipping in its first cargo of oil of Pakistan origin, tanker arrival data obtained from sources and compiled by Thomson Reuters Oil Analytics showed. Private refiner Essar Oil in July received a small parcel of Pakistani condensate from trader Trafigura, the data showed. India, Iran''s biggest oil client after China, lifted an annual 2.4 percent more oil from the Opec member in July, the data showed, with Tehran''s share in India''s overall purchases during the month declined to 5.2 percent from 5.7 percent a year earlier. Indian refiners received 16.5 percent more oil in July compared with June, the data showed. India, the world''s fourth-biggest oil consumer, imports about 80 percent of its needs, with most of that coming from the Middle East.

Copyright Reuters, 2015

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G2G LNG deal to be inked in October: Khaqan

Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Monday said Pakistan and Qatar will ink government to government (G2G) deal on Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in the first week of the October 2015. Talking to Business Recorder the Minister said that officials of the Qatargas Company and the Petroleum Ministry concluded negotiations on the LNG and both the parties decided to ink final deal in the beginning of October. "On the part of Petroleum Ministry we have completed all the necessary work for going into a long term contract with the Qatargas and at the start of October, 2015 we will ink the final deal with the Qatar. The government of Pakistan will strike a deal to import 400 Million Cubic Feet per Day (MMCFD) of the commodity," the minister said. He added that the government has planned to take the LNG imports during next two years up to 2 Billion Cubic Feet per Day (BCFD) mark for which private sector is also encouraged. According to sources in the Petroleum Ministry the government as yet has not fulfilled the conditions of the Qatargas Company for entering a final G2G deal. The Ministry of Petroleum has assured the officials of the Qatargas to complete all the set conditions within next 6 weeks which include a standby letter of credit by power sector for the purchase of the commodity, tri-party agreement between Pakistan State Oil (PSO), Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC), required channel depth for docking of LNG ships at Port Qasim and port charges. The officials said that the Petroleum Ministry has completed almost 75 percent of the Qatargas conditions and remaining 25 percent issues will be resolved within next 6 weeks. Sources said that the power sectors reluctance to issue standby letter of credit and PQA's failure to develop required channel depth were the real problems in not inking of the deal, adding that all these issues will be resolved by the end of September. "Ministry of Water and Power is mainly responsible for the failure of power sector related problems. Petroleum Ministry was in regular contact with the Qatargas since 2013. The power sector has to pay up to Rs 30 billion payments to the Ministry of Petroleum on account of consuming LNG in power production," the officials added. The present government after taking over in June 2013 started attempts to import the commodity saying that to deal with the severe energy crisis LNG import was the only option. The government through bidding selected Engro Elengy Private Terminal Limited (EPTL) to construct first LNG terminal which was completed in 11 months on March 20, 2015 and first LNG shipment was arrived on March 26. From March 26 to date Pakistan has consumed a total 6 ships of LNG-mainly by Independent Power Producers along with CNG stations of the Punjab. According to sources at present the LNG shipments are delayed due to delay payments by Independent Power Producers (IPPs) and other consumers, which have reached Rs 30 billion mark. Sources said 821 Punjab based Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) stations have deposited Rs 1.8 billion besides billions of rupees security deposits to the Ministry of Petroleum for importing LNG, but due to non-payments of IPPs not a single Letter of Credit (LC) for the import of LNG was opened during past two weeks.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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PPL announces discovery in Gambat South

Pakistan Petroleum Limited the operator of Gambat South Block with 65 percent working interest (WI) along with its joint venture partners Government Holdings Private Limited and Asia Resources Oil Limited with 25 percent and 10 percent WI, respectively has announced another gas and condensate discovery at its exploration well Kabir X-1 located in District Sanghar, Sindh. Kabir X-1 was spud on April24, 2015 and reached the final depth of 4,020meters on June 28, 2015. Based on wire line logs, potential hydrocarbon bearing zones were identified in the Basal Sand of Lower Goru Formation. Initial testing flowed 1.94 MMscfd gas alongwith 253 bbl/d condensate at 16/64 inches choke size. Currently, well testing is underway to evaluate the potential of the discovery.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Work on TAPI project to begin on December 25: Khaqan

Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday stated that work on Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline would be inaugurated on December 25, 2015, whereas the project would be completed in three to four years. Speaking at a press conference here along with State Minister for Petroleum Mir Jam Kamal and other senior officials of the ministry, he said that during the recent meeting of the TAPI steering committee in Ashgabat, it was decided that Turkmenistan state-owned company Turkmengaz would lead the consortium for a 1800-kilometre pipeline carrying gas from the Central Asian energy-rich state to energy-hungry India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. "The state company, in its capacity as lead consortium for TAPI, will oversee construction, financing, ownership and operation of the project," the minister maintained. The TAPI pipeline would connect growing energy markets in South Asia with the mostly untapped potential of Turkmenistan, a country with the fourth largest reserves of natural gas in the world. TAPI Ltd operating company includes Turkmengaz State Concern, Afghan Gas Corporation, Pakistan''s Inter State Gas Systems (Private) Limited and Indian GAIL Limited with equal shares. The minister said that an upstream development of the project would cost approximately $ 15 billion, while down stream would cost $ 10 billion, adding that work on upstream and down stream development would start at the same time. He said that the laying of the pipeline from Turkmenistan via Hirat, Kandhar, Chaman, Quetta, Dera Gazi Khan and Multan to India would be completed within three years. He said that as per agreement Pakistan, India and Afghanistan would have five percent obligatory shares in the project, while Turkmengaz being the lead financer of the project would have obligatory 51 percent shares and rest 34 percent would be available to other partner countries. The minister said that keeping in view Pakistan''s energy needs in future, the would not only complete TAPI, but Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline as well as construction of more Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals in Karachi and Gawadar were also under consideration. He added that China was constructing a gas pipeline in Pakistan, while negotiations were underway with Russia for laying a gas pipeline at a cost of $ 2.5 billion. Replying to a question over security of the TAPI pipeline project, he said that the Afghan government had assured the partners of providing foolproof security to the project, adding that the laying of the project would give Afghanistan an estimated $ 600 million per year as a transit fee. He said that if the project was timely completed, the parties would seriously consider laying another pipeline from Turkmenistan. Replying to another query, the minister said that a Qatari delegation was coming to Islamabad on August 24 to deliberate on agreement with government on LNG. The minister also said that the government would notify up to 6 percent increase in consumers gas prices effective from September 1, 2015. Speaking on the occasion, State Minister for Petroleum Mir Jam Kamal Khan said that Pakistan and India had been in talks to complete the project since 2000, but no serious efforts were made in this regard. "After coming into power, Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) government vigorously perused the project and now we are going to practically start work on it," he added. A senior official of the Petroleum Ministry after the press briefing told Business Recorder that Ashgabat was seeking to speed up the project as after Iran''s nuclear deal with world powers, it would bring additional gas into the world energy market.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Energy, mining sectors: Chinese firm, Shahbaz discuss cooperation

A high-level delegation from Jining City, China led by Secretary Jining Municipal Party Committee Ma Pingchang met Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif. Promotion of co-operation in energy particularly mining sector was discussed during the meeting. Talking to the delegation, Shahbaz Sharif said that Pak-China friendship has stood every hour of trial. He said that a new era of economic relations between Pakistan and China has started during the tenure of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif. He said that bilateral relations between both the countries are touching new heights. Mentioning China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the Chief Minister said that besides investment, the historic economic package given by China is a great gift for Pakistan. He said that the historic economic package of 46 billion dollars during the visit of Chinese President to Pakistan is a glorious example of everlasting friendship between both the countries and Pakistani people can never forget this favour of China. He said that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor will not only bring prosperity in Pakistan but the whole region. Shehbaz Sharif said that a huge amount of 33 billion dollars has been allocated for energy projects under CPEC. He said that the work on the project under CPEC in Punjab has been started speedily. He said that the construction of 1320 megawatt coal power project plant has been started in Sahiwal and this project will start producing electricity in 2017. Similarly, 900 megawatt solar project is being set up in Bahawalpur which will be completed in 2016, he added. He said that Chinese companies are making investment in all these projects. The Chief Minister said that CPEC projects will be completed through round the clock efforts and no hindrance in the way of China Pakistan Economic Corridor will be allowed. He said that there should be maximum exchange of delegations for the promotion of bilateral relations and we should benefit from the experiences of each other. Head of Chinese delegation Ma Pingchang speaking on the occasion expressed his willingness to further enhance co-operation with Punjab government. He said that we consider Lahore as our second home. He said that we already acknowledge the untiring efforts of Shahbaz Sharif and have witnessed the development personally in Punjab. No doubt, Shahbaz Sharif is serving the masses round the clock under a vision. The delegation included Chairman Shandong Ruyi Group Qiu Yafu, Executive President Shandong Group Zhai Menggiang and senior officials of various companies. Provincial Minister for Minerals Chaudhry Sher Ali, Secretaries Minerals, Energy and concerned officials were also present on the occasion.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Financial close of coal-fired power project achieved

Pakistan''s first local coal-fired project of 660MW to be established by Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) has reportedly achieved financial close with the help of federal government. The cost of the project is $2.1 billion of which cost of mining project is $900 million. The long awaited milestone materialised during a recent visit of the Pakistani team led by Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shahbaz Sharif and comprising Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms, Ahsan Iqbal and Secretary Water and Power, Younas Dagha to China. "Engro''s 660MW coal-fired power and mining projects have achieved financial close," disclosed Secretary Water and Power, Younas Dagha in a chat with Business Recorder. Replying to a question, Secretary Water and Power said that the Chinese assured Pakistani delegation that financial close of following three power projects will be achieved in September: (i) 1320 MW Port Qasim coal power project to be established by Sinohydro Resources Limited, China/Al Mirqab Capital, Qatar, (ii) 1320 MW imported coal l power project, Sahiwal(Punjab) sponsored by Huneng Shandong Ruvi( Pakistan) Energy ( Pvt) Limited; and (iii) 300 MW solar power project Zonergy in Bahalwalpur. Another member of the delegation who recently returned from Beijing said that Chinese are very hopeful that the electricity issue facing Pakistan will be resolved before the end of incumbent government''s term. He said financial close of 150 MW Sachal wind power project 99 MW wind power project of United Energy Pakistan (UEP) and 870 MW Sukki Kinari hydropower project has already been achieved. The project cost is 1.8 billion US dollars and it will be established on Kunhar River, district Mansehra, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The Suki Kinari Hydropower project is one of the largest private sector hydropower initiatives in Pakistan. This project alone is expected to increase Pakistan''s existing available power generation capacity by more than five per cent. The project will be operational by June 2020. A consortium comprising Power Construction Corporation of China and Al-Qavi has been declared the lowest bidder for Rs 82 billion 1000-1200 MW RLNG-fired combined cycle power plant in Haveli Bahadur Shah of Jhang district. According to the evaluation report, available at the website of Water and Power Ministry, the evaluated cost of the project offered by the lowest consortium was 7.921 cents per unit. Other parties which took part in the ICB offered the following rates: (i) ENKA Construction and Industry Co Inc and GE Consortium 8.134 cents per unit; (ii) JV of Harbin Electric International Co Ltd & Habib Rafiq (Pvt) Ltd 8.181 cents per unit; (iii) JV of Hyundai Engineering and Construction Co Ltd & Hyundai Eng. Co Ltd. And DESCON 8.728 cents; and (iv) JV of China Machinery Eng. Co (CMEC) & SEFEC 8.280 cents. The criteria for bid evaluation was Levelised Electricity Cost (LEC) as function of the energy (kWh) generated , EPC cost, LTSA cost and fuel cost in the first twelve years.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Hydel power: Chinese company offered eight projects

Pakistan has initially offered around 8 hydel power projects on upper Indus to the Chinese firm Three Gorges Corporation which established the world’s largest dam in China. These projects were identified in preliminary talks held with a delegation of Chinese energy Company, Three Gorges Corporation (TGC), led by Qin guo Bin, Chief Executive, which called on Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Asif on Tuesday. CTG owns and operates the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydroelectric power plant with a capacity of 22,500 megawatts. During the meeting, projects like Diamer-Bhasha, Bunji, Thakot, Muda and other hydropower projects were identified with the combined capacity of 35,000MW hydel generation. Official familiar with the development said that senior officials of Ministry of Water and Power were on a visit to China to hold energy talks and a detailed meeting would be held on August 28. The Chinese government-owned CTG expressed an interest in financing projects in Pakistan in conjunction with the International Finance Corporation, a World Bank subsidiary. The offer is in addition to the $46 billion financing for power and transportation infrastructure being provided by the Chinese government and Chinese banks to Pakistan for the construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). According to studies conducted by the Water and Power Development Authority, Pakistan has an identified potential of producing up to 60,000 MW of hydroelectric power, of which 40,000 MW is located in a region called the Indus Cascade, which begins in Skardu in Gilgit-Baltistan and runs through to Tarbela, the site of Pakistan''s biggest dam, in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Of this, only 6919 MW has been tapped so far. The biggest project the government has already identified and begun preliminary work on is the Diamer Bhasha dam, which would require $15 billion to construct and would have a nameplate capacity of 4,500 MW. The Chinese company has also shown an interest in investing in the upper Indus hydropower projects. The Minister extended full support for the Indus Energy cascade like Diamer-Bhasha, Bunji, Thakot and other hydropower projects with a capacity of 35,000MW. "We will encourage the Chinese to invest in development of hydel resource of Indus cascade," said an official who attended the meeting. The delegation requested that basic data may be provided for the review work on 7 to 8 hydropower projects on the upper Indus. The Minister said that Chairman Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) would give full data and the Ministry of Water and Power along with finance division would facilitate and cooperate with them fully. The minister also highlighted the importance of the hydropower projects with a reference to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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'Solar energy may illuminate rural areas'

Solar energy can play a pivotal role to provide for the country's underprivileged communities, especially in rural areas. "One such example is that of the solar system installed at the Help NGO's Maternity Hospital in Surjani Town area of the city," said Sana Rizwan, Design Manager at Reon Energy, which is the renewable energy division of Dawood Hercules Limited. In a statement issued here, she said in the last decade several private sector entities had emerged to take up charges to facilitate development in such distant communities. "Solar solutions are effective for a variety of clients; especially for those in the far-flung, off-grid areas and backup batteries help overcome the system's downtime in absence of sunlight," said Sana. This rooftop installation was completed within a short time-span of 20 days, she said. "Solar energy has greatly facilitated the treatment process at the hospital," Sana said, adding Pakistan had ample sun energy that made it ideal to utilize solar power technologies. From powering tube-wells on farmlands to academic institutions, solar is an affordable source of energy.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Coal power project in Thar LoI singed with Chinese firm

The signing ceremony of Letter of Interest (LoI) with Shanghai Electric Group Company Ltd (SEGCL) for development of 2x660MW indigenous coal based power project in Thar was held on Friday at Ministry of Water and Power. Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Secretary Water and Power Mohammad Younus Dagha, Managing Director PPIB Shah Jahan Mirza and other senior officials of PPIB, NTDCL and Ministry of Water and Power witnessed the ceremony. The LoI was signed by Shah Jahan Mirza, Managing Director PPIB and from the company's side it was signed by Meng Donghai, Director SEGCL. SEGCL will develop a project of 1320MW (2x660MW each) utilising indigenous Thar lignite coal to be supplied by Sino-Sindh Resources which is the lease holder of Thar Block-I. Federal Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Muhammad Asif said the abundant coal resource largely remains unexploited till date are estimated at around 186 billion tons out of which 175 billion tons are found in Thar alone. He said, "Our government is committed to develop Pakistan's local coal resources and utilise them for power generation, thus realising our dream of making Thar as the energy capital of Pakistan in coming years." The sponsors of the project had signed equity investment agreement with China Coal Technology and Engineering Group Corp and Joint Venture Agreement with Shanghai Electric Group Company Limited during the visit of the Chinese President to Pakistan. The project is a proof of the Government of Pakistan's sincere interest of utilising Thar coal for power generation and its development will reduce Pakistan's dependence on costly oil based power generation, thus saving millions of dollars of foreign exchange. It is expected that the project will start its commercial production during the year 2018. The 1320MW Thar coal based power project will be using Steam Turbine technology and selling power to National Transmission and Dispatch Company (NTDC) on signing of a 30 years term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). It is pertinent to mention here that the SEGCL is in the list of priority projects of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2015

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969MW Neelum Jhelum Hydropower project: financial close quite possible by September

The long-delayed 969MW Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project is likely to achieve financial close in September 2015, paving the way for its completion in early months of 2017, well informed sources told Business Recorder. Earlier, the project was scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016 but difficulties in arrangement of finances have marred progress. However, the government activated itself for arrangement of finances after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took personal interest, held several meetings with the stakeholders and emphasised the need for an early completion of the project. "China Exim Bank has agreed to extend required finances of $ 576 million. Wapda has also arranged Rs 100 billion through Sukkuks with lead of NBP and the issue of stuck up amount of Islamic Development Bank (IDB) is also resolved," the sources maintained. The IDB had withheld $433 million loan because Pakistan was reluctant to seek performance guarantees from the project contractor, fearing that if it asked the contractor to provide guarantees against the additional cost, the contractor may take the authorities to court. In February 2015, Government of Pakistan and State of Kuwait signed additional loan agreement of $ 32 million for Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project. Initially, the completion date was October 2015, which was later revised to November 30, 2016. Earlier, the cost was estimated at $1.8 billion, but it has now gone up to $4.21 billion. The concept of Neelum Jehlum was floated in late 80s with the objective of establishing water rights so that India could not disrupt water flows. At that time India was still planning to build a run of the river project - Kishanganga Hydroelectric Project. Initially work started on a limited project which was later on expanded. However, after the earthquake of 2005 entire classification of the project was changed. Formally, the project was initiated in 2008. In June 2015, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had expressed annoyance at the delay in the project and directed the government to explore the possibility of its privatisation or execution on PPP basis. Wapda was in favour of completion of the project on PPP basis but opposed proposal of privatisation. However, funding issue was almost resolved after the Finance Minister, Senator Ishaq Dar actively intervened. When contacted Chairman Wapda Zafar Mehmood confirmed that the project will achieve financial close very soon as funding has been arranged. Economic Affairs Division (EAD) is in negotiations with the China Exim Bank which will extend all the required funding.-MUSHTAQ GHUMMAN

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Jhal Magsi MoW&P ready to use gas if transported to Guddu Power House

The Ministry of Water and Power has expressed willingness to utilise 15 Million Cubic Feet per Day (MMCFD) gas only if it can be transported 300 km away to Guddu Power House from Jhal Magsi Gas Field operated by Oil and Gas Limited Company's (OGDCL), it is learnt. "The issue was raised on the direction of Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources and it was discussed at different fora including the ECC. In response to the Petroleum Ministry's proposal, the Ministry of Water and Power did not show any interest in arranging a rented power plant on the field but expressed willingness to utilise the gas only if it could be transported 300 kilometers away to Guddu Power House, which is not economically feasible," an official of the Petroleum Ministry said. According to sources privy to the developments, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources has forwarded a summary to the Economic Co-ordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) suggesting three proposals for utilising Jhal Magsi gas field's production: (i) installing an on-field power plant; (ii) setting up a Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LNG) plant; or (iii) Sui-Southern Gas Company (SSGC) may lay a gas pipeline for the transportation of gas. "Even setting up a small LNG plant requires at least $100 million, while laying a gas pipeline of 85 kilometers from the field to nearby transmission line will need $12 million and transporting it for 300 km would make the proposed project economically unfeasible. The best option to utilise the gas is to install a rented power plant with a capacity of 50 Megawatts (MW) to 100 MW on the field", sources added. According to the Petroleum Ministry sources, the ECC on February 2013 gave the approval for supplying 15 MMCFD of Jhal Magsi gas to Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and SSGC on an equal sharing basis. Due to law and order situation and tribal conflict the gas utilities have been unable to lay a pipeline as a result 15 MMCFD of gas remains unutilised, the officials said. Sources maintained that to resolve the power crisis and to utilise the gas production of small gas fields situated away from the main transmission lines, the Petroleum Ministry in collaboration with Ministry of Water and Power devised a plan in 2014 to install on field power plants with a capacity to generate approximately 1,500 MW of electricity; however the Ministry of Water and Power has not indicated an interest in the proposal and as a result the plan endorsed by the ECC remains unimplemented.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Iran wants greater cooperation: Zarif

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has said Iran wants serious and meaningful discussions with Pakistan on economic co-operation and underlined the need to work jointly for regional peace. Addressing a joint news conference with Advisor to prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, he said his second visit during the last four months reflects Pakistan significance for Iran. "We want co-operation with Pakistan in all sectors. Technical level work on IP gas pipeline project is in progress in co-ordination with relevant ministries of two countries," he said, adding that economic relations between the two countries would further deepen as soon as decades long restrictions on his country are lifted following a nuclear agreement with P5+1. He said that both the countries have decided to work together for regional peace. In reply to questions, Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif further stated that his country fully supports Pakistan''s efforts of dialogue between Afghan government and Taliban. Pakistan and Iran have also held talks on border issues and agreed that both the countries not only have to address the problems of border terrorism, but also deal with the issues of drug and human smuggling. To a question about the impact of China Pakistan economic Corridor project on the region, visiting Iranian Foreign Minister said that his country supports growth and development in Pakistan. Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz said that constructive and positive discussions to expand bilateral co-operation were held during the meeting. Aziz further stated that during the discussions, both sides reviewed the regional situation and the challenge of extremism. He added that Iran hopes for a positive outcome from the talks between the Afghan Taliban and Afghan government being mediated by Pakistan, which will help bring peace in the region. The Advisor to Prime Minister said that two sides have also held discussions on trade, energy, and IP gas project and agreed that enhancing bilateral collaboration in the energy sector was one of the major areas of mutually beneficial co-operation. He said that two sides also emphasised to completes IP gas pipeline. Sartaj said that the meeting of National Security Advisors of India and Pakistan would be held during the ongoing month and he would be visiting India on August 23. He further stated that Pakistan is taking up CSF issues with US authorities and Pakistan is hopeful of some progress in this regard by September 30, 2015. Sartaj further said that economic integration and connectivity need to be improved not between Pakistan and Iran but also within the region for the benefit of the people. While congratulating the Iranian foreign minister on Tehran''s nuclear deal with the world powers, he said the implementation of the agreement will contribute to regional and international peace and security. He expressed the confidence that it will also open new avenues of economic and commercial co-operation between Pakistan and Iran.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Transmission, distribution system: ADB to finance projects: Country Chief

Asian Development Bank has expressed willingness for financing projects relating to upgradation and strengthening of transmission lines and distribution system in Pakistan next year. Country Director, ADB Werner Liepach met Finance Minister, Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar here on Saturday and discussed ADB financed projects in Pakistan. Finance Minister welcomed ADB''''s expression of interest for financing the power transmission and distribution system which he said would further add to Pak-ADB economic co-operation. He also shared with Mr. Liepach details of progress achieved on Energy DPC-2 and said that most of the prior actions in this regard had been completed by Pakistan. The ADB Country Director and the Finance Minister also held initial discussion regarding the establishment of Pakistan Disaster Management Fund which would be steered by ADB. Mr. Liepach said ADB would help arrange finances for the Fund from donors and development partners. Both sides agreed that in view of recurring natural calamities like floods, it was becoming increasingly important to have such an arrangement to deal with emergent situations. They also agreed to explore possibility of having a standby credit line to deal with such situations. The Finance Minister on this occasion also shared with Mr. Weerner Liepach the outcome of the IMF talks held at Dubai. The ADB Country Director felicitated the Finance Minister on successful conclusion of the 8th IMF review which would lead to release of next tranche of over 500 million dollars. Both sides reaffirmed the resolve for continued Pak-ADB co-operation for economic development in Pakistan.

Copyright Independent News Pakistan, 2015

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3000MW power: Pakistan, Iran agree to finalise deal

Pakistan and Iran on Monday agreed to finalise a deal on 3000MW electricity instead of 1000MW which is already under negotiation. This consensus was evolved at a meeting between Secretary Water and Power, Younas Dagha and Iranian ambassador to Pakistan Ali Raza held in the Ministry of Water and Power. Iran has given its consent to the export of an additional 3000MW to Pakistan despite the fact that the latter has not paid millions of dollars to Iran for import of 74MW due to non availability of banking channels. According to an official statement, during the meeting various ongoing and future energy projects came under discussion. Secretary Water and Power while acknowledging the Iranian offer for export of electricity to Pakistan, said both the countries are already working on the proposal and modalities for 1000MW are in final stages. He said that this phase can be readily executed. A high-level delegation will visit Iran shortly to negotiate and finalise power purchase agreement for 1000MW that Iran has offered to export to Pakistan. The Iranian Ambassador emphasised that after 5+1 Agreement, his country is keen to speed up power sector co-operation with Pakistan. The Ambassador stated that Iran is ready to export 3000MW electricity to Pakistan. National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has approved the purchase of 1,000MW from Iran at the rate of Rs 8-10 per unit. Iran has also expressed willingness to extend 70 percent financing for Iran-Balochistan transmission. Tanvir has consented to finance HVDC interconnection project cost in its own territory (approx. $265 million). Both sides have also agreed that the power purchase contract of February 7, 2007 for supply of 100MW to Gwadar will be used as a base document in preparation of contract for supply of 1,000MW. In case one transmission line is working properly, electricity supply will continue without interruption. The cost of the transmission line from border to Quetta will be Rs 580 million.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Set up by Siddiqsons Group: NEPRA approves upfront tariff of 350MW coal project

NEPRA has approved upfront tariff of 350MW coal-fired Supercritical Power Plant being established by Siddiqsons Group. This 350MW Supercritical Coal-fired Power Plant will be Pakistan's first ever coal power project of its kind at Port Qasim, Karachi. Approval of upfront tariff by NEPRA will assist the company in further accelerating the progress of the project. Company has also entered an enormous developmental and progressive phase. The estimated cost of the project is US $600 million and financial close is expected by first quarter of 2016. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Siddiqsons Energy Limited, A. Rahim Rafi said that his company is fully cognizant of the fact that low-cost electricity is extremely crucial for the economic growth and stability of the country and coal-based energy production is the key to addressing this issue. Against the global trend where world is producing approximately 41 percent of electricity through coal, Pakistan is producing less than 1 percent electricity through coal, despite being the cheapest source of electricity. Siddiqsons Group believes in innovation and catering to unique market segments in Pakistan. After successful ventures of denim manufacturing, MCB and Ocean tower in Pakistan, Siddiqsons is diversifying into power generation to help reduce electricity shortage in the country through efficient supercritical technology that has lower cost and lower carbon footprint as compared to existing assets in Pakistan. The company was formed in May, 2014, with a mandate to enter into the business of power generation and since then, it has proactively invested in the development of the project.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Power sector: ECC approves sovereign guarantee

The Economic Co-ordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) has approved issuance of Sovereign Guarantee of Rs 7.487 billion syndicated term finance facility for power sector and extended export of wheat and wheat flour till September, 30 2015. An official said that the ECC meeting presided over by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has deferred approval of a proposed five-year automotive policy and directed Minister for Water and Power, Chairman Privatization Commission, Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and Secretary Industries to review the policy for making improvement in it. The Finance Minister also wanted that views of Commerce Ministry should also be incorporated in the policy before resubmitting it to the ECC. Thus, after a detailed discussion on Automotive Development Policy 2015-20 and Telecommunications Policy 2015, the meeting directed line ministries to resubmit the policies for approval after incorporating the improvements as suggested by the forum. The ECC was informed that Sovereign Guarantee for the power sector would be issued by Finance Ministry. The meeting reviewed a proposal by Ministry of National Food Security and Research for extension in surplus wheat export from Punjab and Sindh provinces till September 30 2015. The export of 800,000 metric tons was allowed by the ECC in January 20th 2015 to government of Punjab at the transport rebate of US$ 55 per metric ton and 400000 metric tons to Sindh government at the transport rebate of US$ 45 per metric tons. The ECC also allowed export of what flour (aata) in its meeting dated February, 9 2015 with specific timelines. However, in view of further requests from Pakistan Flour Mills Association, the date for export of wheat and wheat flour has been extended till 30th September 2015. Exemption of 5 per cent in sale tax was also approved by the ECC on wheat bran. Chairman Federal Board of Revenue informed the meeting that flour, which is main product of the flour industry, was exempt from sales tax and imposing a tax on its byproduct, bran, was creating an anomaly. The ECC considered proposal by the Ministry of Communication for grant of EPC (Engineering design, procurement and construction) contracts to the firms recommended by the Government of China through competitive bidding for the Karakoram Highway Phase-II and Karachi-Lahore Motorway projects being undertaken by NHA. The ECC accorded approval stating that a mechanism for such projects was already covered under article-II of the Framework Agreement signed by Pakistan and China in April with the approval of the competent authority. The ECC had a detailed discussion on the proposal submitted by Ministry of Food Security and Research regarding pending payments to PASSCO by Afghanistan government for supply of wheat. The meeting approved the claim as prepared by PASSCO and also accorded approval for the payment to Abdullah Khan and Imranullah Khan, hired by PASSCO for transportation of wheat. Pakistan and Afghanistan had signed an agreement in 2008 for supply of 50,000 metric tons of wheat to Afghanistan.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Power generation capacity at Mangla to enhance to 1310 megawatts

Mangla Refurbishment Project, which is being implemented by the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority, will increase the generation capacity of Mangla Hydel Power Station from 1,000 megawatts to 1,310 megawatts, Chairman Zafar Mahmood said in a visit to the Mangla Dam on Friday. He had a detailed round of the Mangla Hydel Power Station, the dam and the spillway and then of the Mangla reservoir rim at Khaliqabad that also saw the presence of Member (Power) Badr-ul-Munir Murtiza, Mangla Dam General Manager Ghulam Sarwar Memon and other senior officers. He said, "There is a dire need of injecting low-cost hydroelectric power to the national grid to mitigate electricity shortages and reduce electricity tariff. Therefore, it is imperative that the Mangla Refurbishment project be completed within the stipulated time frame." In reference to the high flows and the present water level in the Mangla Lake, which is 1236.7 feet, the chairman directed the authorities concerned to take utmost care and strictly follow the criterion jointly devised by all stakeholders for filling the reservoir. It was reported that the Mangla Refurbishment project would be completed in three phases with approved PC-1 amounting to Rs 52,224.3 million. On completion of the project, the existing installed capacity of Mangla Hydel Power Station will raise by another 310 megawatts with additional energy generation of 1632 million units of electricity per annum.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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'Government committed to resolving energy crisis'

Deputy Speaker National Assembly Murtaza Javed Abbasi has said the government committed to resolve energy crisis across the country. In a statement issued here on Sunday, Murtaza Javed welcomed the government announcement to build a grid station in District Mansehra. The grid station will be built with cost of 20 million US dollars by National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) and 120 kanal of land has already been acquired for this purpose. The construction of the grid station is scheduled to be initiated from September, 2015 and will be completed in December 2016. The decision was made in the light of long lasting demand of the locals due to severe issue of low voltage of electricity being transmitted in the area that resulted in distribution crises of power. Murtaza Javed has congratulated the people of Mansehra and said the government was committed to resolve the issues of energy crises and poverty in the country and was taking all possible measures to provide basic amenities to masses at their door step. He said that unfortunately, previous governments had neglected Hazara Division but the current government was taking keen interest for development and to resolve power shortage of area. Deputy Speaker assured that similar projects will be started in other parts of the Hazara Division in future to fulfil the electricity needs. He thanked Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and Minister for Water Power for approval of grant for construction of grid station in District Mansehra.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2015

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Pakistan to have significant energy growth soon: Asad

Energy is a critical element in our lives and positive developments are taking place in energy sector of Pakistan. Four to five years from now, our country will have a significant energy growth as many big projects are in the pipeline, said Syed Asad Ali Shah, former advisor finance, Sindh, on Tuesday. "One of the greatest achievements of this government is to import LNG through LNG terminals, which have been completed in March this year. LNG import is becoming streamlined. It will very much help redress energy crisis," he said while speaking as a guest of honour in Conference on Entrepreneurial Engineering Opportunities in Renewable Energy for self-sufficiency organised by College of Engineering Sciences, Institute of Business Management (IoBM). He said apart from achievement in LNG sector, oil prices had also crashed which would boost overall production of the country. Shah said integration in energy sector was a much needed. All the companies working in silo should be controlled and monitored by one single body. "It is unfortunate thing that our country has been relying on imported fuel to generate electricity, while, our country is blessed with many resources and one of them is huge reserves of coal. I see positive development in Thar coal as Engro Corporation and Habib Bank Limited will be working on it," he said. He said hopefully, sanctions on Iran would be soon lifted and Iran-Pakistan (IP) Gas project would become reality. Prime minister of Pakistan has also discussed energy issue with Turkmenistan in his recent visit. We are generating 100mw electricity from wind corridors, which have the capacity of thousands megawatts. We also have great potential of solar energy if used properly," he said. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Engro Vopak Terminal Limited Shaikh Imran Ul Haq delivered presentation on how Pakistan got LNG pipeline laid. How challenging it was in 335 days, "Still Engro achieved this task". "We are energy deficit country and importing LNG will provide us cheap alternative energy," he said. Senior Executive Director Osmani and Co Dr Akhtar said Europe and America had excelled in wind and PV solar energy as renewable energy, while coal, gas and oil are vanishing in those countries. Germany's single largest energy production is solar and we were not getting benefit of this natural resource despite abundance of it in our country. He said wind and PV solar energy should be used by choice rather than compulsion. Karachi was going to be dark in the smoke of pollution and electric vehicles were the solution for this. Managing Director Systek (Pvt) Ltd Navid Ansari said energy gap is third world countries like Pakistan could not be overcome in near future. Solar energy could be immediate, affordable and abundant alternative source. Member (Energy) of the Planning Commission, Ministry of Planning, Development and Reforms, Syed Akhtar Ali said pricing on PV solar products should be lowered to promote the product. The government needed to lower duties on local production to make it viable. Rector IoBM Talib Karim, Chairperson IEEE Dr Parkash Lohana, Ex-managing director Siemens Sohail Wajahat, Engineer, IEEEP, Irfan Ahmed, Dean Faculty of EECE MUET Dr Bhawani Shankar and HoD Public Affairs and Senior faculty IoBM Parvez Jamil were also present on the occasion.

Copyright Pakistan Press International, 2015

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Solar project in Quaid-e-Azam Park Bahawalapur Shahbaz discusses matters with Chinese company

President of prominent Chinese company in energy sector Zonergy, Yu Yong met Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif and discussed various matters regarding the solar project to be set up in Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park Bahawalapur. It was agreed in the meeting to complete the project speedily. The President of the Chinese company assured the Chief Minister that 300 megawatt solar project will be completed till the end of current year while the remaining project will be completed in 2016. Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said that work has been started speedily on the first solar project in Quaid-e-Azam Solar Park Bahawalapur under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said that this solar project of CPEC will be completed speedily and standard will also be maintained. All out facilities are being provided to Chinese company in this regard. Work on up-gradation of transmission line for taking the energy produced by the solar project to national grid is also being carried out expeditiously and all concerned institutions are working with mutual co-ordination. Besides traditional methods of generation of power, work is also being accomplished on alternative sources of power production. CPEC projects are of vital importance for removing darkness from the country and bringing light. He said that great beginning of removing darkness from the country has been made under China Pakistan Economic Corridor and work has been started on the first solar project and government is taking steps expeditiously for overcoming the problem of shortage of electricity and energy projects. He said that a number of energy projects will be producing electricity till 2017-18 and load-shedding will be eliminated to a large extent. President Zonergy company Yu Yong while speaking on the occasion, said that Chinese leadership has deep respect for Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif. He said that projects will be completed within the time line government by Chief Minister and all possible steps will be taken in this regard. Additional Chief Secretary Energy, Secretary Energy, officials of Chinese company and concerned authorities were present on the occasion.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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Sahiwal coal-fired project to start generating electricity by 2017: Punjab CM

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that time has come to change destiny of the nation and the country. He said that let us all forget our differences and unite, stop allegations, make service of the people our motto, start the process of building of the nation and the country through honesty, hard work and determination and write a new bright chapter of development and prosperity of the country, the dream of which is being seen by 200 million people of Pakistan. He said that this is time to change darkness with light and by collective effort and wisdom we should move forward in this regard. He was addressing a function regarding inauguration of construction work of main power building of 1320 megawatt coal power plants in Sahiwal Friday. Earlier, the Chief Minister pressed the button to start construction work of the main power building of 1320 megawatt coal power plants in Sahiwal. Prayer was also offered for the solidarity, stability and progress and prosperity of the country. Chairman Ruyi Group, Qiu Yafu, President Hauneng Shandong power company, Wang Wenzong, Chinese investors, Chinese diplomats, Chinese Consul General Yu Boren, Minister of State for Water & Power Abid Sher Ali, Provincial Ministers, Members Assembly, senior officials and administrative officers were also present on the occasion. The Chief Minister said that today is an auspicious day and a glorious day with regard to eliminating the shortage of electricity in the country as construction work of main power building of coal power plants in Qadirabad, Sahiwal is being inaugurated and 1320 megawatts electricity through coal will be obtained from these plants. He said that these power plants are the first and the biggest project of generation of power from coal in Pakistan for which Chinese companies have made investment. He said that investment of China in Pakistan is not merely investment but a splendid gift for Pakistan and the people of Pakistan cannot forget this great favour of China. He said that work has been started expeditiously on 1320 megawatt project in Sahiwal two and half months after the visit of Chinese President and such a moment has never been seen in the history of Pakistan when work has been started so speedily for the implementation of a project. He said there is no doubt that Pak-China friendship is higher than Himalayas, deeper than ocean, sweeter than honey and stronger than steel. He said that Sahiwal coal power projects are proof of this fact. Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif said that when Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif came into power the issue of energy was very serious. He said that Prime Minister worked very hard for the solution of this issue with the help of China and during the visit of Chinese President to Pakistan, China Pakistan Economic Corridor package of 43 billion dollar package was announced out of which 33 billion dollars is the Chinese investment for energy projects and does not include loan of even a single penny. He said that China could leave Pakistan and make investment in those countries where situation is very conducive for investment but it selected Pakistan which is a friend of China and we are deeply thankful to China. He said that Sahiwal coal power projects is the first drop of rain with regard to CPEC which will give energy and light to the country and darkness will be removed. He said that China could make this investment in some other country but the historic economic package of China is reflective of the confidence of Chinese President, Prime Minister and their leadership in the leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and deep love for 200 million people of Pakistan. Referring to terrorism, Shahbaz Sharif said that besides shortage of energy, elimination of terrorism is another big challenge but due to bold decision of political and military leadership this menace is being controlled and Pak army has rendered supreme sacrifices in the war against terrorism. He said that Pak army, police, concerned institutions and provincial governments have shown splendid performance in the war against terrorism due to which positive results are being witnessed. He said that 43 billion dollars economic package by China includes 33 billion dollars coal, solar, hydel and other projects of power generation through alternative sources. He said that under CPEC work is in progress speedily on power houses of hundreds of megawatts electricity through solar energy in Bahawalpur. Similarly, work is also being carried out speedily on energy projects in Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and Northern Areas. Referring to the sit-ins last year, Shehbaz Sharif said that the evil game played in the garb of sit-ins last year is now a part of history and the way economy was destroyed through sit-ins, the impact of this will be faced by the economy for a number of years. He said that in the garb of sit-ins a brutal game was played with the destiny of people of Pakistan. He said that all work was jammed, our friends returned and so much lies were told that the difference between truth and lies was eliminated. He said that the projects faced extraordinary delay. He said that the nation knows that the conspiracy of sit-ins was hatched much earlier and their meeting was held in London and the cruelty shown to the country and the nation till December cannot be forgotten. He said that these nine months were very difficult for the country and the nation and evil game was played with the country. He said that an unpardonable crime was committed to the destiny of the nation which 20 crore people of the country will never forgive. He said that due to sit-ins a number of projects were undermined temporarily and such sad incidents happened which were highly tragic. He said that the plants which are being set up in Sahiwal for the generation of electricity are most modern and environment friendly and come up to the standard of environment. The Chief Minister said that now when China is making investment in Pakistan where are those big investors of Pakistan who earned billions and trillions of rupees, got their loans waived of, looted funds of the nation, constructed palaces, purchased planes and helicopters and now when poor people of Pakistan need them these investors are not ready to invest even a single penny. He said that this is big crime with the nation which the nation will never forget. He said that where Pakistani investors are when the nation needs them. He said that today Pakistani investors have vanished and if rich investors did not perform their national responsibility the nation will grab their wealth. He said that Pakistani investors should come forward for the people and make investment in Pakistan, set up energy projects and it is a test and a challenge for rich investors. He said that agreements have been signed with Chinese companies and 1320 megawatt coal power projects will start generating electricity from 25 December 2017 however, informally the Chinese companies have assured that the project will be completed by September 2017. He said that no other project has been completed so speedily in Pakistan. The Chief Minister thanked Chinese President, Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, Chinese ambassador, Chairman NDRC, Chinese Consul General, senior authorities of Chinese companies as well as Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, Federal Ministers Kh. Asif, Ishaq Dar, Ahsan Iqbal, Kh. Saad Rafique and authorities of other federal and provincial institutions for playing their role for furthering these projects.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2015

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