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Agreements With Tajikistan for Electricity Import in Final Stage

Saturday 26 May 2012

HYDERABAD (Associated Press of Pakistan) – Federal Minister for Water and Power Syed Naveed Qamar (سیّد نوید قمر) Saturday said that the government has entered into the agreements with Tajikistan Government for import of electricity while talks with India and Iran are in progress in the regard. He hoped that the issue of power crisis will be settled soon.

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Tando Muhammad Khan Grid Station
For years, the matter of balancing Pakistan’s supply against the demand for electricity has remained a largely unresolved matter. Pakistan faces a significant challenge in revamping its network responsible for the supply of electricity. Federal Minister for Water and Power, Naveed Qamar Saturday said talks were underway over import of electricity from India, adding headway was expected on the project soon. He cited the replacement of gas with oil fuel as the main reason responsible for increase in electricity tariff hike.

The minister said this while talking to media persons and speaking as chief guest at the inauguration ceremony of the installation of 20/26 MVA Power Transformer at 132 KV Tando Muhammad Khan (ٹنڈو محمد خان) Grid Station. The minister said that power crisis in the country was the result of the policies and non completion of power projects during the regime of the previous government. The people of the country could not experience such peak of load management, if the previous government initiated effective policies with completion of ongoing power projects, he said.

Pakistan suffers from a massive electricity shortage. Electricity generation in Pakistan has shrunk by up to 50% in recent years due to an overreliance on Fossil Fuel. In 2008, availability of power in Pakistan falls short of the population’s needs by 15%. Pakistan was hit by its worst power crisis in 2007, after the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the following riots. Production fell by 6000 MW and massive blackouts followed suit. The blame was laid on the then president, Pervez Musharraf (پرویز مشرّف), and was instrumental in his defeat. Load Shedding (deliberate blackouts) and power blackouts have become severe in Pakistan in recent years. The main problem with Pakistan’s poor power generation is rising political instability, together with rising demands for power and lack of efficiency.

With power shortages in Pakistan, Iran has been offering to export electricity to Pakistan at subsidized rates. On February 26, 2012, Iran doubled its power supply to the Makran (مکران) region of Pakistan from 35 MW per day to 70 MW after the enhancement of transmission lines.

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