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News Headlines for the month of
JULY 2011

Energy-efficient motor pumps to replace 11,000 tubewells: PO USAID

To save 115.5 GWh of electricity per year, USAID has decided to replace 11,000 highly inefficient irrigation tubewells with more energy efficient motor-pump that will reduce the electricity consumption by 45 W, said John Morgan, Programme Officer of USAID. He said that the Tube well Efficiency Improvement Programme (TWEIP) is one of six activities under the US Signature Energy Programme that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced in October 2009 to help alleviate Pakistan's severe power supply shortfall. Morgan added, "The purpose of TWEIP is to reduce peak electricity demand of highly subsidised agricultural customers. TWEIP will replace up to 11,000 highly inefficient irrigation tubewells motor-pump sets with more energy efficient motor pumps to reduce demand by 45W, and save 115.5 GWh of electricity per year. The programme offers a 50% subsidy to farmers to replace their pump sets". He said that the project was closely associated with the DISCOs (power distribution companies), Farmer Groups, local trade associations, and six major Pakistani Pump Suppliers (Certified under ISO Standard 9960 for cold water pumps). Five major banks are participating in advancing loans. "This programme has an extensive nation-wide media campaign to publicise the TWEIP. The campaign includes: radio and TV advertisements, docudrama, wall paintings, brochures, kiosks, shop sign plates, pump plates, and utility bill advertisements", Morgan said. About 230,000 of the tubewell pumps in Pakistan are connected to the national power grid and consume 10% of all electricity used in the country. Most of these pumps are highly inefficient. If all of the pumps are replaced, Pakistan can immediately save approximately 1,000 Mega Watts of electricity. This would significantly reduce energy shortages in the country. Pakistan has major power crises, with a shortfall of almost 5000 MW (increasing) gradually, which has led to blackouts that disrupted commerce, industry, and agriculture. As a result, the annual GDP growth has declined from 8% to 2.4%. While 20.9% of Pakistan's GDP depends on the agriculture sector. It is the world's fourth largest user of ground water for irrigation in terms of area under ground water irrigation. The agriculture sector is the third largest consumer of energy in Pakistan and tubewell pump sets are a major component of peak demand.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Russian company offers to invest in power sector

Russian company M/s INTER RAO UES has expressed its interest to invest in the small hydropower, coal power generation projects and to develop transmission lines in Pakistan. A delegation of the company led by Maxim Sergeev, called on Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar on Wednesday to discuss the investment opportunities in the power sector in Pakistan. The delegation also expressed that the company produces and sells electric energy as well as engineers, designs and builds generating assets. The company has expertise in the hydro power, coal power generation and transmission lines manufacturing equipments and interested to invest in these sectors. The company also informed regarding its expertise to develop and run the low BTU gas power plant. The leader of the delegation also said that they will identify the projects for investment. Naveed Qamar appreciated the Russian delegation for their interest in the power sector and said that the government will facilitate the foreign investors in all respect. Pakistan is energy deficit country and the Russain investment will help to meet the future power requirements. He said that special incentives are also being planned to attract the investment in the power sector. He highlighted that upfront tariff based on various technologies and fuel is being announced in order to facilitate the investors. He briefed the delegation on the investment opportunities available in the private power generation. He outlined the efforts of the present government to bring private power projects on fast track bases to decrease the electricity shortfall. Minister said that Pakistan has million of tons coal reserves, as Russian have expertise in coal fired generation he offered development of indigenous resources for power generation. The Minister also said that the government is also facilitating the investors interested in the hydel power generation.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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70,000 houses electrified by using hydro power

Pakistan Council for Renewable Energy Technologies (PCRET) on Monday completed electrification of about 70,000 houses by using hydro power plants which will help to meet local energy needs. Cost of installation of these plants is more than Rs 70,000 per KW. PCRET is also launching a number of projects for the design, development including low cost methodology for installation of hydro power plants in different areas. Talking to newsmen, PCRET Director Sarfraz Khan said, "In past, the energy of flowing water in the far-flung remote areas was being harnessed for grinding, saw milling etc, but with the development of Hydropower technology, various countries developed turbines and generators to produce electricity". Micro hydropower being an alternative to replace the fossil fuel has emerged as a desirable option for hilly terrains where natural and manageable water falls are abundantly available. Sarfraz Khan said PCRET had demonstrated technology on micro and mini level. The programmes had been formulated for the exploitation and on site generation of electricity, he maintained.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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Thermal IPPs to be converted to cheaper fuels

The government has decided, in principle, to convert public and private thermal power plants to cheaper fuels due to rising furnace oil prices and depleting gas quantities, sources close to Minister for Water and Power told Business Recorder. "We are offering substantial incentives to the IPPs which intend to covert furnace oil technology to cheaper fuels. Power sector experts in the Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB) have finalised the plan and now it is being discussed with stakeholders before its presentation to the ECC," sources said. Although conversion on furnace oil or coal is not a viable option for combined cycle gas-based power plants, there are alternative fuels--LNG/diesel/naphtha--which can be used either with minor or no modification. For conventional steam turbine thermal units, the best option would be conversion from furnace oil to coal to benefit from savings in fuel cost component, sources added. According to thumb-rule-calculations, for conventional steam units of gencos and four IPPs, saving would be $8.04 billion, annually, or $120.6 billion in 15 years. "Pakistan's thermal power generation capability is currently facing a dilemma of rising oil prices and depleting gas quantities. This has resulted in build-up of huge circular debt, running in billions of rupees. It has become a major bottleneck for new private investments in the power sector." According to sources, notwithstanding the benefits that may be accrued, the conversion from oil to coal may involve different issues/hurdles eg involvement of new capital costs, outage time to dismantle old boilers and assemble/commission new ones, additional auxiliary consumption, thereby reducing the net generation capacity, higher O&M costs, limitation of space for coal storage & ash handling, probable reduction of efficiency, availability of coal, and environment degradation. PPIB has carried out an in-depth analysis of potential problems and has concluded that the conversion option might be viable, despite the issues, if the processing thereof is made simple and incentive-based, sources added. The incentives, which are expected to be offered to the IPPs, are as follows: (i) IPPs will be given one year (or less if their conversion plan require less time) for conversion, during which they will be provided half of their escalable tariff component (which covers their returns, etc) and full non-escalable tariff component (which covers their debt servicing); (ii) any saving that would be achieved due to switching of fuels (which is expected and shown above as huge) be shared equally among the IPPs and the power purchaser; (iii) power purchaser will be allowed to legalise the arrangement and any extensions in the term of power purchase agreements with IPPs through side agreements without requiring any approval from any government agency/regulator; and (iv) for gencos, the procedure would be much simpler than IPPs, because they do not have to bother about the escalable or non-escalable (as well as debt servicing) or amendments in the agreements. They would simply outsource the conversion without paying any direct cost and by sharing the benefits with the firm that would convert the power complex to cheaper fuel.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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'Work under way to generate 20,000 megawatts of electricity'

Minister for Religious Affairs, Syed Khursheed Shah has said that the government has initiated work on various projects having the capacity to generate 20,000mw electricity. Addressing the participants of Izhar-e-Tashakur ceremony arranged by the reinstated employees of People's Programme, he said, "government is tackling energy crisis seriously. Work is continued on various projects having capacity to generate about 20,000 MW electricity." He further said government has allocated about rupees 35 billion in the current financial budget for energy sector. Work on about 17 small, medium and big dams is in progress. He said that PPP-led government has added about 3,200MW power in the national grid. Khursheed was of the view that a commission should be constituted to ascertain the responsibility of the energy crisis in the country. "The commission should investigate from 1988 to 2008 and pinpoint the responsible of the energy crisis." He recalled that in the era of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto, the country had surplus energy. He said PPP government always works for the poor. He said the government has regularised about 4,000 contract and daily wages employees before June 30. He further said about 86 doctors in various cities have also been regularised. He said PPP-government has always given employment to the deserving youngsters. "We have always been criticised by the opposition for providing jobs to youngsters and if this is a crime we will continue such crimes in future too." The minister said it was the promise of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto to reinstate employees, and fulfilled by President Asif Ali Zardari through an ordinance. Bhutto family have rendered unmatched sacrifices for the strengthening of democracy, he added. On the occasion, In-charge People's Labour Bureau, Chaudhry Manzoor Ahmad said the government is taking all possible steps to provide relief to masses. He said the government has increased about 135 percent salaries of government employees. It has also increased pension. He said that about 8,000 quarters would be constructed for labourers, providing them accommodation facility.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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Around 81 firms registered with PEC's Alternative Energy Resource Portal

Around 81 companies and hundreds of individuals have registered themselves with the Alternative Energy Resource Portal, launched by Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) to help integrate all the relevant organisations and channelise local resources. The purpose was to develop a comprehensive database of all public and private sector organisations and individuals involved in alternative energy development in Pakistan, said PEC's Engineer Ejaz Shah. He said the portal welcomed public and private sector alternative energy consultants, engineers, manufacturers, importers, exporters, CDM projects, certification and similar organisations to be a part of it. In an exclusive talk with APP here on Tuesday, he said the portal catered to the information needs of individuals and organisations interested to convert their homes and offices on alternative energy, especially solar and at the same time helped them in conducting energy audit. "Basic idea of launching the portal was to give access to organisations and individuals at one point and to promote interaction among all. Now the information was being gathered at one place and the stakeholders have an opportunity to discuss and share suggestions," he said. Replying to a question, he said some individual experts, having international exposure, had also registered themselves with the portal and were benefiting each other's expertise. Engineer Ejaz said the solution to come out of energy crisis was not merely energy generation by traditional means, but in an integrated approach such as demand side management, the conservation and efficiency lighting transformation and energy generation through renewable sources. "How long government can keep on paying general subsidies to the energy sector. The solution lies in pumping private money by facilitating them to make energy their business and generate energy," he added. He said the initiative had been taken to enumerate the potential of professional resources so that the sector could be synchronised with the overall energy priorities of the government. Ejaz Shah said the portal was helping in identifying, in specific terms, country's indigenous professional capability. "This effort is aimed at making effective and efficient use of available resources. So instead of inventing the wheel, organisations are benefited by interconnecting with each other. This will increase local production and create jobs."

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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PCRET to install 368 biogas plants in rural areas

Pakistan Council of Renewable Energy Technologies (PCRET) will install 368 biogas plants in different rural areas by the June 2012 under the project "Development and Promotion of Biogas Technology for meeting domestic fuel needs of rural areas and production of Bio-fertiliser". This project was launched in 2008 through which 2500 family size biogas plants are to be installed in the country, out of these 2132 plants have been installed and the remaining will be installed by end of financial year 2011-12. Biogas plant is a device used for converting fermentable organic matter, particularly cattle dung, into a combustible gas (Biogas) and fully matured and enriched organic fertiliser. A typical biogas plant consists of a digester where the anaerobic fermentation takes place, a gasholder for collecting the biogas, the input-output units for feeding the influent and storing the effluent respectively, and a gas distribution system. Giving further details, Deputy Director PCRET, Sarfraz Khattak said as per livestock census 2000, there are 46.69 million of animals (buffaloes, cows, bullocks) in Pakistan. In the year 2002-03, the domestic livestock population was estimated at 23.3 million cattle, 24.8 million buffalo, 24.6 million sheep and 52.8 million goats. He said on the average, the daily dung dropping of a medium size animal is estimated at 10 Kg/per day. This would yield a total of 466.9 million Kg dung per day. Assuming 50% collectability, the availability of fresh dung comes to be 233.45 million Kg per day. Thus, 11.67 million M3 biogas per day can be produced through bio-methanation, he maintained. Since 0.4 M3 gas could suffice the cooking needs of a person per day, therefore, 11.67 million M3 of biogas could meet the cooking needs of 29.2 million peoples. The total population of Pakistan is about 170 million, out of which 70% reside in the rural areas. "We can meet about 30% cooking requirements of the rural masses from this source of energy (biogas) alone. Besides, producing 33.52 million Kg of bio-fertiliser per day or 18.6 million tons of bio-fertiliser per year, which is an essential requirement for sustaining the fertility of agricultural lands," Sarfraz Khattak maintained. Giving further details, Deputy Director PCRET said an average family in Pakistan consists upon 5-7 members. As per survey, the consumption of various kinds of conventional fuel for cooking purpose includes wood 27.93 Kg per day, animal dung 61.66 Kg per day, Charcoal 8.1 Kg/day, Kerosene oil 3.1 Lt/day, L.P.G 1.5 Kg/day ,electricity 25 KWh/day. Deputy Director PCRET said a family size biogas plant (5 M3) save annually 10056Kg wood or 22200 Kg animal dung or 2940 Kg charcoal or 1104 lit kerosene oil or 540 kg L.P.G or 9000 Kwh electricity. Khattak said completion of this project will help protection of forests, environment and bio-diversity, provision of soot-free fuel to meet domestic energy needs, provision of neat and clean atmosphere, protection from eye-cataracts and respiratory diseases and also provision of bio-fertiliser, which is direly needed for the improvement and sustenance of fertility of agricultural lands.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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Four hydropower projects: government gives LoS up to three-year extension

The government has given an extension in Letter of Support (LoS) up to three years for four hydropower projects, ie 840MW Suki Kinari, 147MW, Patrind, 100MW Kotli and 100MW Gulpur hydropower project, official sources told Business Recorder. This has been decided by the Board of Private Power and Infrastructure Board (PPIB), in its meeting held under the chairmanship of Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar. Managing Director, PPIB, briefed the Board that presently 15 hydropower projects with a total capacity of 5620MW are being implemented in the private sector through PPIB. As per the provisions of the 2002 policy, the sponsors are required to file a tariff petition with Nepra within three months after the approval of feasibility study by the POE. After tariff approval by Nepra, PPIB issues a Letter of Support (LoS) to the sponsors upon submission of the Performance Guarantee (PG) and fulfilment of other prerequisites. The LoS is issued for 15-18 months for achievement of financial close within this limit. In July 2008, Nepra announced the 'mechanism for determination of tariff for hydropower projects. The mechanism specifies tariff determination at three distinct stages of project development. The 1st stage tariff is based on feasibility level cost; 2nd stage tariff is worked out on the basis of EPC cost; while the 3rd stage tariff is determined at Commercial Operation Date (COD). Under this mechanism, the LoS is required to be issued to accomplish four critical milestones for implementation of the project; ie a) finalisation/signing of EPC cost and contract, b) Nepra's approval of EPC stage tariff, c) signing of project agreements, and d) achievement of FC to enable construction start. According to the Managing Director, who is being replaced with permanent MD, selection of EPC contractor is a major activity and requires considerable time for preparation of tender documents for International Competitive Bidding(ICB), detailed design and engineering, preparation and submission of bids by EPC contractors, evaluation of bids, and finalisation of firm EPC costs/contracts. In reality, the process of selection of the EPC contractor normally takes 12-15 months. Subsequently, submission of EPC level tariff petition to Nepra and its approval by the authority may take considerable time. Therefore, the validity of the LoS needs to be fixed realistically, so that all activities to be performed under the LoS could be completed within the overall time allowed. Accordingly, the LoS period should be increased from 15-18 months to about 30-36 months. MD PPIB further informed the Board that sponsors of hydropower projects that are at an advanced stage of development - namely, 840MW Suki Kinari, 147MW Patrind, 100MW Kotli, and 100MW Gulpur - have already requested for extension/issuance of LoS for the extended period. Some of the Board members maintained that if this approach was to be adopted as a general rule, the project companies would slacken as they would have too much time to achieve these milestones; and efforts to minimise the time for completion of projects to eliminate power shortages must be taken. These members emphasised that instead of upfront increase there should be a provision for subsequent extensions. However, MD PPIB and many other members stressed that if the initially allowed time is not reasonable to complete all the required activities, the sponsors will be reluctant to submit the PG against a schedule which is not achievable. After detailed deliberation, consensus was reached on convening a meeting of the stakeholders to discuss and agree on a reasonable timeframe to complete all activities under the LoS; however, it was agreed that the LOS for each of the four aforementioned projects may be extended/issued based on the proposed timeframe of 30-36 months. The Board was apprised that banks are generally reluctant to issue PGs for periods exceeding 2 years. The members deliberated the issue and it was agreed that in case of non-availability of PG from the banks beyond 2 years, sponsors may be allowed to submit PG initially for up to 2 years and it should be extended at least 3 months before expiry of such PG for the rest of the time period of the LoS. If the PG is not extended, it will constitute an event of default and the PG will be encashed by PPIB. The Board approved extension/ issuance of LOS for the 840 MW Suki Kinari, 147 MW Patrind, 100 MW Gulpur hydropower projects up to 30-36 months. It was also decided that in case of non-availability of PG from the banks beyond 2 years, sponsors should be allowed to submit PG initially for up to 2 years and it should be extended at least 3 months before expiry of such PG for the remaining time period of the LOS; if the PG is not extended as mentioned above, it will constitute an event of default and the PG will be encashed by PPIB.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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3,000 megawatts added to national grid in three years: Qamar

Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar said on Wednesday that 3000 megawatt of more power has been provided to national grid during last three years. According to a press release issued here, he said very hard work is being done to bridge the power demand and supply gap. Steps have been taken to minimise the duration of the loadshedding so that the problems of the people could be reduced during summer. He said no area has been exempted from power loadshedding. Loadshedding is being done in cities and villages under a well-prepared plan and without any discrimination. The government is taking all steps to raise power generation as during the hot season the gap widens between demand and supply of power. Maximum electricity is being produced from the existing power production units, he said. He urged people to avoid violent protests, as this does not offer solution to any problem.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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Gilani for generating energy through alternate sources

Prime Minister, Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani stressed the need for generating energy through alternate sources to meet the country's energy needs, here on Tuesday. Talking to a delegation of a joint venture of Norwegian and Chinese companies at PM House, the Prime Minister said, Pakistan has multiple alternate sources to produce electricity, which were beneficial in terms of low production cost besides being environment friendly. Gilani said that the mega projects were already initiated by the government but they would take certain time to complete, while the alternate energy projects need less time for completion, which would be greatly supplement of the government's efforts to reduce electricity's demand and fill the supply gap. The Prime Minister assured that the government would ensure every possible facility to encourage investors in energy sector and it was for the same reason that investors had been extended attractive incentives in this sector. He said the government had allowed the provincial governments to set up electricity power projects to meet their needs. The Prime Minister directed the Federal Ministry of Water and Power, the provincial governments and all stakeholders to extend all possible assistances to the Norwegian/ Chinese investors in the completion of their project. Gilani said that he would advise the Sindh Government to speed up the process to allocate suitable land at wind corridor allowing prompt initiation of the project. He ensured full facilitation in this regard and asked the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) to complete the formalities and issue Letter Of Interest to NBT at the earliest. The Prime Minister stated that such projects in the remote areas of Pakistan like Gharo and Jamshoro in Thatta District would bring about a revolution in the area both in creation of jobs as well as to generate economic activities, which would help to reduce poverty. The Executive Chairman of the joint venture Arne Myre said that the incentives given by the Government of Pakistan for setting up Wind Power Projects in Thatta District are quite healthy and attractive. He assured that the 500 MW wind farms would be completed in specified period. The first phase of 250 MW Wind Power Projects, he mentioned, would start functioning till December 2012 while the second phase in the minimum possible time soon after that. Arne Myre said that the co-operation being extended by the government and its organisations would definitely help to accelerate the process of implementing the projects. He added that their company owned 27 percent shares of Nordic Wind Power, which was one of the big names in the wind turbine manufacturers in the world. He said that their company also intended to set up hydro power projects in Pakistan. M/s NBT Wind Power Project (Pvt) Ltd, subsidiary of NBT AS, a Norwegian based company had expressed its interest to set up 500 MW Wind Power Project in Pakistan by investing about one billion dollar in the alternative energy sector. Presenting their business and investment plan to the government, the Chairman NBT AS, apprised that the company has already applied for issuance of Letter of Interest for 500 MW and expressed that after issuance of LoI, the company will complete 250 MW wind project till December, 2012.

Copyright Associated Press of Pakistan, 2011

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Norwegian NBT interested in setting up wind-power project

Norwegian company M/s NBT has expressed its interest to set up 500 MW wind-power project in Pakistan by investing about one billion dollar in the alternative energy sector. This was indicated by Arne Myre Chairman of NBT while talking to the Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar, at a meeting on Monday. The seven-member delegation of the NBT presented their business and investment plan. Myne apprised the Minister that the company has applied for issuance of LOI for 500 MW and expressed that after issuance of LOI, the company will complete 250 MW wind project within 18 months. Sind government has been asked to allocate suitable land at wind corridor. He said that their company owns 27 percent shares of Nordic Wind Power which is one of the big names in the wind turbine manufacturers in the world. He also said that their company will also set up hydro-power projects in Pakistan. Myre also asked for early and suitable tariff and support in clean development mechanism approval from different forums for this project. Minister for Water and Power, Syed Naveed Qamar welcomed the interest of the company and said that its intrusion in the Pakistani wind energy market would definitely be very encouraging for the market and the other investors. He ensured full facilitation in every step of project development. He asked the AEDB to complete the formalities and issue LOI to NBT at the earliest. He said that all the concerned departments will be contacted to speed up the process allowing prompt initiation of the project. The Minister also asked the AEDB to finalise the upfront tariff for wind projects with Nepra. Qamar also said that the government is giving top priority to the alternative energy projects and offering incentives to those investors who will set up wind-power projects by the end of 2012.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Installation of 15 megawatts power plant: Chinese team visits Sukkur Barrage

A team of China Water and Electric Corporation (CWEC) has visited Sukkur Barrage in order to install Hydel power project, Business Recorder learnt. A team of CWEC water and electric experts visited Sukkur Barrage and conducted a short survey during the visit, sources told Business Recorder. Officials of Irrigation and Power departments briefed the team about water availability situation at Sukkur and other barrages of province including Guddu and Kotri. The Chinese experts met with higher authorities of Power department and discussed technicalities of the issue in detail with them. The sources said that the team had showed interest in installing hydel power plant at Sukkur Barage while some other surveys would be conducted by the team in this regard. They said that if the plant was installed it would have a capacity of 10 to 15 MM power generation which could be consumed by the local people and industries.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Thar coal reserves may help control energy crisis: Dr Samar

Thar coal reserves can help Pakistan to come out of the present energy crisis, which has marred the industrial as well as economic growth of the country, said Dr Samar Mubarakmand, a renowned nuclear scientist and Member Planning Commission of Pakistan here on Saturday. "If air compressors would be provided by the government then electricity and gas could be produced from Thar coal reserves next month", Dr Mubarakmand said while talking to media after addressing a seminar organised by Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industries. Dr Samar addressed the business community of the region and shared the possible solutions of present energy crisis with business leaders. President RCCI Ali Raza Saeed Shah, senior executives of the chamber, former presidents and business leaders of the regions were also present on the occasion. Dr Samar said that the production of electricity and gas from Thar coal fields is a huge national activity, which will have impact on the country's power production and help it bail out from present economic crisis. "It is need of the hour that government should take some quick steps to address the problem and take the private sector along to meet the capital cost of the project using basic raw material available in the country", the nuclear scientist suggested. The science and technology section of the Planning Commission conceived a project to be pursued at a pilot scale in the Thar coal fields for the production of 100MW of electricity, he said, adding that similar projects are being currently implemented at more than 40 places in four continents. "Coal is also converted into coal gas above the ground in machines called surface gasifies," Dr Samar said, adding that the efficiency of the conversion of coal gas to electricity is about 40 percent. The engine-generator sets are different from engines designed for operation with natural gas. These are also available from leading manufacturers in America, Europe and China. He said that the biggest problem country's industrial sector is facing is shortage of energy, but gas load-shedding is no solution to energy crisis, there is need to take some drastic steps. The solution to this problem lies in coal reserves of Pakistan but poor and weak implementation methodology on energy policies and projects is causing immense problems for country's economy, he added. He said that around 25,000 industrial units have become sick and more than 400,000 people have lost their jobs owing to the prevailing energy crisis while deteriorating law and order situation had its bad impact on industrial growth, which haunted the economy. Dr Samar said that the present distress in the industrial sector of Pakistan cannot wait for a few years for the solution, while the government cannot step in to alleviate the energy crisis due to lack of implementation on the energy policy. He said that on average, 1 kilogram of coal produces 1 Kwh of electricity. The cost of the coal is Rs 6000 per ton whereas 1 unit of electricity will cost approximately Rs 7.50. Surface gasifiers are being manufactured in size for producing 300KW up to several MW/hour of electricity. He said up till now three surface gasifiers have already been installed and are in operation in different industries. Another 18 gasifiers are currently on order awaiting delivery within the nest 6 to 8 weeks. This solution has become highly popular in the manufacturing sector of Pakistan. "It is expected that by the end of the current year, significant number of our industries will be generating their own gas and electricity from coal, which would impact the economic growth of the country through enhanced manufacturing, increased employment, competitive exports as well as increase in the intensity of our mining sector," he added. "We have lots of natural resources but if the technical experts would not perform their duty then we wouldn't be able to overcome this energy crisis", Dr Samar said, adding that this is our pilot project and I am very much confident that we would get good results and then we would implement it on larger scale. Earlier, President RCCI Ali Raza has informed the honourable guest that owing to law and order situation and energy crisis foreign investors are reluctant to invest in the country. He said that it is a fact that local investors are also shifting their businesses to the neighbouring countries owing these issues. He demanded of the government to resolve the said issue soon to preserve the local industry. Talking about availability of coal in Pakistan he said that the Chamalang Coal Field has reserves of approximately 50 million tons. This coal field has production of 2000 tons per day. Kost-Sharig-Harnai Coal Field has total reserves of 76 million tons. Annual production from the mines is about 225000 tons. Dukki Coal Field has total 51 million tons of coal reserves and annual mining capacity is almost three thousand tons. The Quetta Coal Field has the reserves of about 50 million tons. Much Coal Field has the reserves of 23 million tons. Lakhra Coal Field has average annual production of 1.1 million tons. Salt Range Coal Field has reserves of about 235 million tons. Ali Raza Saeed Shah thanked Dr Samar for visiting RCCI and said that business community is also looking for alternative energy, as everyone is disturbed because of the energy crisis. At the end Syed Ali Raza Saeed also presented a souvenir to Dr Samar.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Punjab chalks out policy to generate 900 megawatts power

The Punjab government has chalked out a mid-term policy for generating 900 megawatts energy from various alternate sources during the next two and a half years. Punjab Energy Secretary Rab Nawaz told a meeting held here on Saturday to review various projects for generating energy from alternate sources, disclosed an official. Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif chaired the meeting while Chief Secretary, Chairman Planning and Development, energy expert Nadeem Babar, Chairman for Special Initiatives and other concerned officers also attended the meeting. The secretary said the policy include five projects of 50 megawatt each of hydel power and 300 megawatt coal-based project. "Similarly, talks are underway with sugar mill owners for generating energy from trash of sugarcane and this policy would also be given a final shape during next week," he added. On the occasion, Shahbaz Sharif said the Punjab government had evolved a comprehensive programme for generating energy from alternate sources and formulated short and midterm policy in this regard. He said that the energy crises was leaving a negative impact on the economy of the country, saying that to put the country on the road to progress, promote industrial and economic activities, encourage investment the energy crisis had to be overcome. He issued directives to give final shape to the policy for promoting public-private partnership in the energy sector and added that monthly targets should be fixed for reviewing the progress of energy projects in the province and ensured achieving of these targets. "Planning has been made for getting energy through hydel power and coal whereas negotiations are also going on for getting energy from trash of sugarcane and soon the project of getting energy would be given a final shape in the light of these dialogues.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Implementation of MoU to be expedited: SBI assures Chinese CG

Sindh Board of Investment (SBI) on Thursday assured the Consul General of China Zhang Jianxin to expedite the implementation of MoU signed by China Wind Energy Company for power generation of 2,000 MW in Pakistan. The assurance was made at a meeting between consul general and the advisor to Chief Minister Sindh Muhammad Zubair Motiwala held at SBI office here. Advisor to Chief Minister Sindh Muhammad Zuabir Motiwala said that China is good friend of Pakistan and the government is trying hard to provide all related facilities to the foreign investors. Muhammad Zubair Motiwala said that the soft image of Pakistan should be depicted to the world, so that foreign investors may be encouraged to come to invest in the country. He said that China is a huge market with great business diversity. Secretary SBI Mohammad Younus Dagha informed the Consul General of China about the upcoming 4-day visit of Sindh investment delegation to China, which would be started from 12 July 2011. He said that 18 delegates from different private sector organisations would meet Chinese businessmen during the visit. Dagha said that they would be arranging meetings of delegation with government official of China as well as business community. Secretary informed the prime task of the visit is to create awareness about attraction towards invest opportunities in Pakistan among the business community of China, He also informed that the government would also like to expedite implementation of MoU signed by China Wind Energy Company for power generation of 2,000 MW in Pakistan. Mohammad Younus Dagha said that during the visit our delegation would meet the foreign investors belonging to Power sector, Aquaculture, Information Technology, Mass Transit and Urban transportation and other sectors.-PR

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Pakistan to seek China's help in 19 power projects: talks in Beijing from August 1

Pakistan and China are holding first energy sector-specific dialogue under Pak-China Joint Energy Working Group (JEWG), in which Pakistan will seek Chinese assistance for 19 projects, including Pak-Iran gas pipeline and Thar coal power project, official sources told Business Recorder. Pakistan's team will be led by the Minister for Water and Power, Naveed Qamar in the two-day dialogue to be held on August 1-2. The projects, which will be tabled by the Pakistan side for assistance, are as follows: Thar coal mining and infrastructure development; 405 mw integrated coal mine and power project; Tarbat dam; Ghabir dam; Naigaj dam; Naulong dam; national transmission and distribution; 747 mw Guddu dispersal of power project; Uch power -II; inter -connection of 1200 mw Engro and 1200 Pepco Thar coal-based power plant, 969 kv Neelam Jelhum interconnection with Rawat transmission line; Tarbella Jatti 500 KV transmission line; geological map on Pak China border; investigation for geothermal energy; 849 mw Suki Kinari hydropower project; 100 mw Kotli hydropower; 157 mw Madian hydropower; 1200 mw AES imported coal power project; and Pak-Iran gas pipeline. The Minister for Water and Power, Naveed Qamar, who is hopeful of positive response from China, has said that through the JEWG, Chinese government, companies, investors and entrepreneurs would be invited and encouraged to participate in various initiatives of the government of Pakistan undertaken for the development of power sector. The government will facilitate and provide incentives to the Chinese for investment in the water, power, and other energy sector projects. He said that the government is fully committed to resolving the prevalent energy shortages in the country and achieving energy security objectives on sustainable basis. He expressed hope that his visit to Beijing to lead JEWG will be fruitful and the country will get more co-operation from China in the energy sector. Qamar will reach Beijing on Sunday to attend JEWG to be held on 1-2 August. JEWG was constituted pursuant to a MoU between Pakistan and China to promote co-operation in the field of energy. Under the MoU, which was proposed by National Energy Administration of China to establish bilateral energy co-operation mechanism, the Energy Working Group was assigned the task of carrying out co-operation in the areas including oil and gas, coal, conventional power, nuclear and renewable energy etc. Moreover, during the visit of the Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in December 2010, under Energy Co-operation mechanism, it was decided that China will provide financing and co-operation for conventional, renewable and civil nuclear energy projects, to be identified by Pakistan. Both countries have termed JEWG as an important opportunity which will further strengthen the bilateral relations between Pakistan and China.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Khyber Pakhtunkhwa frames comprehensive hydro-power strategy

Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Ameer Haider Khan Hoti has said that a comprehensive strategy has been framed for the utilisation of the potential of generating thousands megawatt electricity. Talking to media and addressing the 26th meeting of the Board of Directors of SHYDO during a visit to Malakand-III Project Dargai, he said that in December this year practical work on two projects having the capacity of generating 153-megawatt electricity in Matlitan and Lawi Chitral will start. He directed completion of other hydropower generating projects in the province. He said that after terrorism, energy crisis is the largest problem faced by the country, saying the government is working on emergency basis for the arrest of the problem. During the meeting, besides reviewing implementation of the decisions taken in 25th meeting of the Board of Directors the chief minister was given briefing regarding progress on power projects initiated by both public and private sectors and matters. Hoti said that the country is facing severe energy crisis, which could not be resolved in nights. However, he said that for arresting the crisis in future taking practical steps are inevitable. The provincial government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has framed a comprehensive strategy; through the utilisation of the huge potential of hydropower, overcoming of the crisis and strengthening of the economy of the province will be accomplished. Under the rights achieved by the province under 18th constitutional amendment the government has decided investment on hydropower projects in the province, which will begin in December this year. The chief minister directed the SHYDO for ensuring initiating of practical work on Matlitan and Lawi power projects in December. He said that the 153 mega projects would be completed in a period of two and half years. On this occasion, the Board of Directors agreed on the inclusion of Secretary Irrigation on the body. The chief minister also directed giving implemental shape to power projects including Matlitan and Lawi and holding of consecutive review meetings in this regard. On this occasion Managing Director, SHYDO, Bahadar Shah told the meeting that after laying the foundation stone of 153-hydropower projects work on the 17 MW Raniwala Khawar. 2.6 MW Machai hydropower projects would start in January or February 2012. Similarly, work on 31 MW Koto (Dir), 8 MW Jabori (Mansehra) and 10 MW Karora (Shangla projects is expected in July next year.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Energy crisis: Ministry to release Rs900m for Thar coal gasification project

The finance ministry has promised release of Rs900 million for the Thar coal gasification project, which will initially produce 100 megawatts of electricity through conversion of coal into gas. The project was discussed in a meeting held here on Thursday, chaired by Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh. For the first phase of the coal gasification project, $105 million (Rs9 billion) had been sought for opening letters of credit for the import of machinery and equipment. Member Science and Technology of the Planning Commission, Dr Samar Mubarakmand, said by the second week of September, he would be able to open the lid of the gasification project. In April 2009, the federal government had approved two projects, “Creation of new processing facilities (for production of coal gas by underground coal gasification)” and “Creation of new processing facilities (for handling and purification of coal gas produced by underground coal gasification)” costing Rs494.45 million and Rs490.48 million respectively. The projects are now in full swing and the first 50MW gasifier to produce underground coal gas (UCG) has been completed. However, for the power plant from Syngas (integrated gasification combined cycle), an amount of Rs8.9 billion including foreign exchange component of Rs5.9 billion is needed. This project was not allocated any funds in the last financial year and this year too only Rs5 million has been allocated against the demand of Rs5.7 billion. However, keeping in view the importance and financial viability of the project, the minister accepted the demand of Rs900 million for machinery and equipment. Speaking in an interview in early June, Mubarakmand said the country would start generating electricity through coal gasification by next year. Under the project, coal would not be mined, rather plants would be installed on deposits to produce gas in a most sophisticated manner. Thar coal reserves, estimated at 175 billion tons, have the potential to generate 5,000 megawatts of electricity for at least 800 years to meet the growing energy demand of the country, he added. According to a report, Thar coal reserves are far higher than combined oil reserves of Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Published in The Express Tribune

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