Govt plans new micro, mega power projects

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Work on TAPI in progress

Zahid Chaudhary

Islamabad—The Government is exploring new power generation projects on micro as well as mega level to ensure sustained and uninterrupted electricity for the future generations. This was stated by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif while chairing a meeting of Cabinet Committee on Energy here on Tuesday.
The meeting reviewed all ongoing power projects that will add significant electricity to the national grid up to March 2018.
The Prime Minister said Government’s holistic reforms in the energy sector and efforts for generating additional power through diversifying the energy mix will help in meeting the future energy requirements of the country.
He said that the present government has unprecedented edge to execute power generation projects having capacity more than the power generation initiatives taken during the last twenty years.
The Prime Minister said that the focus of the government right from the first day was to resolve energy crisis in the country and adding sufficient energy to the national grid.
He said the Government is determined to provide cheaper electricity to people. He expressed pleasure that the Government was on track in its endeavours and load-shedding will be a reference of history.
Mian Nawaz Sharif said the Government will keep on exploring new power generation projects on micro as well as mega level to ensure sustained and uninterrupted electricity for our future generations. This is a duty that previous governments were unable to fulfill.
Meanwhile, the government is considering lifting moratorium on new gas connections to housing schemes. The ban was imposed back in 2011 and now a proposal is under consideration before the cabinet to lift the ban.
Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbassi told the National Assembly on Tuesday that import of LNG is the big achievement of this government to meet the ever-increasing energy demand. He said there will be 33 percent increase in the LNG import by July next year. He said with the import of LNG, industry and fertilizer plants are getting supply of gas. He said CNG is available in Punjab which was suspended previously
Shahid Khaqan Abbasi told the House that the government has accelerated the efforts of domestic exploration of oil and gas to meet energy shortage in the country.
He was winding up discussion on a resolution moved by Naeema Kishwar Khan regarding gas load-shedding in the country.
The Minister said that there is 33 percent increase in the exploration and the success ratio is 54 percent. He said the process will be further accelerated. He said 90 new discoveries have been made in Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
The Minister said there is 40 percent increase in the domestic consumers of gas in winter. He said steps are being taken to fulfill the requirement.
He said the government has made efforts to move forward on Pakistan-Iran Gas Pipeline Project but progress on the project is not possible till the complete lifting of international sanctions on Iran.
Petroleum Minister said work on Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India project was started in December last year and hoped that it will be completed in four years. After completion, Pakistan will be able to get gas through this project.