Trade: (PBIF demands urgent steps to revive power sector)

ISLAMABAD: President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF) and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday demanded the government to take immediate steps to revive sick electricity sector so that masses and economy shouldn’t undergo further step.

He said country’s installed capacity is around 23500 MW while it can hardly produce 12000 MW which has resulted in shortfall of four to five thousand MW which can be tackled through improving the existing infrastructure.

He said the demand for electricity will be hiked by 200 percent to 35000 MW in the next five years which would be difficult to manage if urgent steps were delayed.

He said as per the official figures losses have been increased from 18 percent in 2014 to 18.3 percent, recovery has seen modest increase from 87.8 percent to 88.6 percent while circular debt has reached Rs 627 billion rupees which was 411 billion in 2013.

Mian Zahid Hussain who is also president of All Karachi Industrial Alliance said that additional incentives to power sector and transforming technical issue into a political dispute has resulted in costliest electricity for domestic and commercial sectors in the region.

He said two major IPPs have recorded profit of 28 and 25 percent which is a reason behind irrational power tariff which is more than twice as compare to that in India and Bangladesh which has left our export industry uncompetitive.

Pakistan tops south Asia nations as far as the climate change and urbanisation is concerned which has put additional load on infrastructure and energy demand which must be tackled though a proper policy, he demanded.