AZAD KASHMIR: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said the government is laying more emphasis to produce electricity at cheaper rates. For this purpose, he said hydro electric, LNG and coal projects are been established.
Inaugurating 102 megawatt of Gulpur power plant at Kotli in Azad Kashmir on Thursday, he said providing cheap electricity to the industries is imperative to make their products competitive in the international markets.
He said Thar coal mine is also being explored to meet the future energy requirements of the country.
Prime Minister said the government plans to build a host of small and big hydropower projects to address the issue of electricity shortage.
He pointed out the foreign companies are showing great interest to invest in the country especially in the power sector.
He said the foreign investors should become partners in the mega projects of Diamer Basha and Dasu Dams which will add about which will add about nine thousand megawatt of electricity to the national grid.
He said 969 megawatt Neelum Jhelum project is nearing completion and we are interested to privatize it after its commissioning.
Nawaz Sharif said the government is also setting up three LNG power projects having the capacity of 3600 megawatt.
Foundation stone of one of the power plants has been laid while two hundred billion rupees will be provided from the public sector development program for the other two LNG power projects. These projects will become functional by 2017.
The Prime Minister reiterated the commitment to address the issue of power shortage by the end of 2017. He said power shortages have already considerably been reduced from twelve to six hours. These will continue to decline in the years to come.
About China Pakistan Economic Corridor Project, the Prime Minister said the work on this project has been fast tracked.
In his remarks, Minister for Water and Power Khawaja Asif Gulpul power project will provide clean and affordable energy and it is a welcome additional in this time of need.
He said the government has adopted a futuristic policy to enhance efficiency of public sector power plants besides accelerating pace of work on under construction or delayed power projects in order to complete them in the shortest possible time.
He pointed out that there is potential of generating five hundred megawatt of power on Poonch river which will be fully exploited.
Addressing the ceremony, Prime Minister Azad Kashmir Chaudhary Abdul Majeed appreciated the goverment’s steps towards addressing the electricity shortage.
He also lauded the prime minister for strongly raising the Kashmir issue at the United Nations General Assembly.