PM: (PM direct to ensure timely import of LNG)

ISLAMABAD: Chairing the 9th meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy here on Thursday, the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has said that power projects must be fast tracked on top priority basis to provide relief to the people at the earliest.

He said Pakistan is tapping all sources of energy to increase power generation at affordable rates. He directed the Committee that steps should be taken on immediate basis for early start of the 1680-km Turkmenistan-Afghanistan- Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline which would be immensely beneficial in providing energy security to the region.

He said that a timeline of power situation forecast for both short and long terms should be presented to the Committee and meticulously followed. The Cabinet committee gave approval for starting negotiations with Malaysia, China, Algeria, Nigeria, and Trinidad for import of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). Negotiations in this regard are already under way with Qatar.

It was further decided that an improved mechanism would be devised for LNG payments on regular basis to avoid any complications in this regard.

Ministers for Water and Power and Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi briefed the Committee on setting up of 3600MW power generation plant based on Re-gasified LNG. The Prime Minister gave in-principle approval for allocating funds in PSDP for financing of this project. The Committee was informed that LNG Terminal at Port Qasim would be completed by next month.

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