Leghari asks WB/IFC for assistance

Staff Report
Saturday - January 27, 2018
ISLAMABAD: Power division minister Awais Leghari, in a meeting with world bank (WB) and international finance corporation (IFC) delegation headed by WB south Asia vice president Annettee Dixon and IFC regional vice president Snezana Stoijkvic on Friday, said that his division is planning to establish renewable energy institute to conduct research, study the existing potential and propose policy matters, to the government in the field of alternative energy, for which he invited WB and IFC to provide assistance; an official statement said.

According to detail, Leghari while explaining the potential of renewable energy sources that Pakistan has, stated that in order to tap the resources and pass on its due benefits to the consumers, his government has taken decision to call competitive bidding for the renewable energy power generation in future.

He said that his division is working on indigenous resources mobilisation for the establishment and sustainability of the proposed renewable energy institute.

Leghari underscored the need of investment in the power distribution sector to modernise the existing infrastructure. He invited the WB and IFC to consider investing in laying the “ABC cables” in the distribution network which will greatly help in reducing the line losses and controlling theft.

He marketed that the payback time for ABC cables is just 9 months.

Leghari informed that amendments in national electric power regulatory authority (NEPRA) act is in the upper house and with its finalisation the power sector will be more open for the investors, kick starting the electricity as commodity trade at distribution levels.

He said that his division is working on concept of ‘wheeling’ with securities and exchange commission of Pakistan (SECP) to make the electricity as a tradable commodity.

IFC vice president Stoijkvic said that IFC is keen in tapping the renewable resources of wind and solar power generation in Balochistan and in this regard their teams will coordinate with Leghari’s division and all other stake holders.

The IFC will also keenly assist the power sector in tapping the renewable energy sources in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), he promised.

Stoijkvic expressed interest in investments for improvement of electricity distribution network and it was agreed that both sides will soon hold a roundtable talk on possibility of such investment.

WB south Asia vice president Dixon appreciated the reforms already undertaken by the power sector.

Dixon reiterated that WB will continue the support for power sector in the modernisation of transmission lines.